Thursday, February 08, 2018

Wine Tasting and Lunch at Bellevue

with the Wine Club
We enjoyed our brief lunch and recent visits to Bellevue so much we took our Wine Club there for our first meeting of the year on Sunday. Dirkie Morkel did a really thorough tasting and the club members so enjoyed their day and the lunch. They certainly bought a lot of wine to take home
Four of the Bellevue reds, Pinot Noir, Cinsault, Shiraz and Pinotage,
We had a table for 24 on the terrace. There is also plenty of room in the garden area, with umbrellas and inside. It is very popular indeed and very easy to get to, as it is on the outskirts of Stellenbosch on the Bottelary Road. The owner of the farm had the table next to us for a lunch en famille and further down the terrace was another table with a birthday celebration
Members chatting before the tasting, and catching up; we hadn't seen each other since our Christmas party at a member’s house in Constantia, where we enjoyed a performance by the Bob Mowday band. One of our members, Johnnie Fisher, plays the trombone in it
Dirkie doing the full tasting with a couple of generous additions from his cellar. He is always very informative and amusing, much to the enjoyment of the imbibers
In 2002 our wine club, the Oenophiles, made two barrels of Pinotage using half a ton of Bellevue's grapes from the oldest Pinotage vineyard in the country, planted in 1953, and we still have some in our cellar. We brought them to let Dirkie and the club members taste them. He insisted we decant both bottles to see how they differed. One had a composite cork the other quite a good one - some liked one more than the other but it was even Stevens! The wine is mature and the fruit is starting to go but it is not bad for an amateur garagiste wine, even if it won't ever win any awards. We did over extract the grapes by putting too much pressure on the hydraulic wine press, when one of our members got a bit enthusiastic at pumping to 3 Bar!
Time for lunch and there have a very simple menu http://bellevue.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Bellevue-menu-Jan18.pdf. Also a good place for breakfast. Many had the good hamburgers which come with a small salad and crisp chips. You can also order pizza as they have an oven. The wine is at Tasting room prices too, or by the glass
Others had the fish and chips. We had the small 200g sirloin steaks, also with the same accompaniments
Crisp onion rings on the cheese topped burger
A great day, despite the heat. We were very cool on the terrace. Thank you all at Bellevue
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