THIS winter, Stellenbosch Hills re-introduces tasting room visitors to the world’s quintessential pairing of wine with cheese.
The winery, in the heartland of South Africa’s most famous wine region, has made a speciality of pairing experiences. These include such innovations as wine with biltong and even popcorn.
Now, it goes back to the roots of this tradition, beyond retro – to where these two irresistible bedfellows first met. It may seem pure co-incidence joined the twain, planting a seed of tradition where wine and cheese producers first sprang up together.
More recent research shows however, that certain foods – and cheese in particular – can actually improve the experience of a wine. This partnership-made-in-heaven was meant to be and is precisely what Stellenbosch Hills highlights with a selection of its delectable wines in the months of June, July and August this year.
These include the Stellenbosch Hills Shiraz 2018, which has just won Double Platinum and title of Top 100 South African wine at the National Wine Challenge; the Muscat de Hambourg, that won Double Silver at the same competition as well as a four-star rating from Platter’s South African wine guide; and the Cabernet Sauvignon that was awarded a Gold Wine Award last year.
Completing the line-up are various highly-rated artisan cheeses from Stanford-based producer, Stonehouse.
Prepare to brie enchanted by these ridiculously good combinations:
- Sauvignon Blanc & semi-soft cheese flavoured with garlic and chives
Crisp and zesty, the wine is an ideal partner to the cheese in this experience that delightfully entwines fruitiness with savoury notes.
- Shiraz & semi-soft cheese with Cajun spice
The wine shows classic notes of red fruit, oak spice and hints of black pepper – elements that meet the fullness of the Cajun spice and dance on the palate.
- Cabernet Sauvignon & hard Boerenkaas cheese flavoured with cumin
Two powerhouses meet in this combination. The wine is bold with the complexity of ripe fruit, oak spice and notes of cedar wood. The cheese is just as expressive, matching every step of the wine in flavour and intensity.
- Muscat de Hambourg & Camembert
They say opposites attract and this is certainly true of this pairing. The wine is fragrant with notes of candyfloss, boiled sweets, rose petals and violets. It goes beautifully with the young, slightly sharp and salty cheese.
With each Wine & Cheese experience, Stellenbosch Hills’ wine ambassadors will provide a short introduction before leaving tasters to navigate the pairings in their own time.
The tastings are available from June until end of August 2021 at R75pp.
Be sure to say “cheese”, and tag Stellenbosch Hills. Facebook | Twitter @STBHills | Instagram @stellenbosch_hills.
The Stellenbosch Hills tasting room is open Mondays to Fridays from 9am until 5pm, and Saturdays 10am until 3pm. The winery is at the intersection of the R310 and Vlottenburg Road, just outside Stellenbosch.