Posted by ymartiny | Filed under Wine@ventures
We hit the road early Saturday morning on what must have been the most beautiful day this winter so far. You know, when the day is just hot enough to wear shorts and yet you are reminded of winter by the whisper in the breeze of a cold, wet and stormy week past. Who would’ve thought that this perfect morning in winter would be the prelude for the perfect day in the Winelands?
Dombeya Wines (also known under Haskell – as on the sign at the entrance) invited a small handful of Spit or Swallow’s most adamant and prolific wine-flies to experience the unblemished and newly hatched Long Table Restaurant with the very generous & unimposing Grant Dodd as our host and who welcomed us at the restaurant’s reception with a glass of Dombeya Sauvignon Blanc (I think). After quick introductions and formalities we set of on the first of many surprises and adventures to follow that day.
With a very slick-‘n-smooth glass of wine in the hand we took the farm road to have a look at the farm’s other newest and most exciting development, a block of Shiraz aptly named the Hades block which ruggedly stood above and apart from the rest of the vineyard. With masochistic Shiraz vines struggling to lift themselves from the rock-befocked earth, it’s easy to see why it’s been labeled so belligerently. A return on these grapes would only be seen in about 5-7 years, but I sure as hell (pun intended) am not going to wait until then to return.
We did however return to the Long Table Restaurant with its unique décor, furniture and fittings – I tried to place it for some time and eventually conceded to myself that this was Afrustchic (Africa-Rustic-Chic, self-termed) Minimalism, with concrete washed floors and seeded-chandeliers lighting a humble interior which attempts to highlight the surroundings instead; part of the very beautiful Golden Triangle cupped between the Helderberg mountains. Here not even the corporate-soiled breeding ground for bacteria, viruses and goggas vineyard across the river, detracted from the awesome views.
Grant explained the last-supper concept of the Long Table where everyone, in true family style, is encouraged to break bread freely and openly as at a nudist camp. To share and indulge in great food, with great company and equally great wines, “Cult!”, I yelped but soon realised that this communal form of eating was actually acceptable and enjoyable … and with that our culinary journey commenced: A variety of freshly prepared breads followed by platters of beef Carpaccio and then Caesar salad – “the very subtle salad dressing pairs beautifully well with the Chardonnay”, I agreed with Jan-2. The mushroom fuck-me-sideways ravioli ©™® drenched in truffle oil was next to complete the pre-entrée dishes.
Corli Els, the exec chef extraordinaire whom I, overwelmed with emotion, uncontrollably hugged upon departure, advised we take a break. This is where Grant had a ‘WatseFokkenWynIssit‘ blind tasting. Yeah! Something I’ve had some practice with at our White Stick Sips tastings – still not an expert – but never with foreign wines which was the case with Grant’s line-up … needles to say, I was out early. They both landed up being exquisitely fine wines, the first one a ‘nights in white satin’ wine with its clear and delicate notes and the other ‘rock me Amadeus’ in its complexity and follow-through. Both ended up being Bordeaux Wines from nowhere else but our wine cousins in Europe; France (Domaine de Chevalier and Chateaux Lango Barton).
This left toungues at the table wagging and with that, the mains were presented which consisted of roast veggies, a take-me-to-bed-and-make-me-your-bitch potato bake, the most succulent free-range Klapmuts duck which has never seen the inside of a fridge or freezer and tender impala medallions that had the crap bliksemed out of him/her, topped with a fantastic apricot marmalade (?) to round of that ‘wilderness-ness’. Lemon tart and cheese platters followed but by then I couldn’t take another bite let alone try stand up for fear of falling over, I sissied-out.
Grant knows the Business of Wine and could probably write a book – by the Q&A Brian was expertly executing and Grant’s response, he could probably write a few. The lines on his forehead are as defined as his character and in this shadow of brilliance I sat intimidated but satisfied in edification and illuminated by gorgeous wine and incredible food – I could hear angels breaking out in song. We stood and toasted a 1953 KWV Muscadel, the last in a serious of surprises at the end of a perfect day … content.
O yes, sorry to pis on my indulgent exit there. I forgot to mention we had the privilege to taste the essential-to-every-wine-collection wine, the infamous Haskell Pillars Shiraz 2007 – enough to make one weep…!
7 Responses to “Hades to Angels at a Long Table”
May 18th, 2010 at 06:42
Speechless, well done – You rock Amadeus
Just love those warm winter days….. Perfect indeed
Tweets that mention YmartinY » Blog Archive » Hades to Angels at a Long Table -- Topsy.com Says:
May 18th, 2010 at 09:21
[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Martin van Oordt, Martin van Oordt. Martin van Oordt said: Hades to Angels at a Long Table http://wyn.cc/dntkt #storietyd <new blog> [...]
May 18th, 2010 at 14:55
Dude, you are a talent. Some of the best blogging I’ve read. Great to meet you and I think we must do it again sometime.
May 18th, 2010 at 15:21
Like I said – definitely not the last time … don’t know how I ever overlooked this place.
Again, thanks for a great time.
Lamb Queen Says:
May 28th, 2010 at 12:43
Tried phoning but you out for lunch & peddie. Anyways, just wanted to tell you that I went nosing round your blog/web site and caught up on some delayed reading – pls forgive.
I really like the pics you post on your blogs, very warm and stylish – for me it is cause I have never been to these places, and now I can see what they look like too. Also, when you ‘highlight’ (you call it a link Lamb Queen – YmY) a place, I go onto their web and it takes you to new and exciting places – so ya, quite to keen to try out these places if I decided to go out again.
AWEsome writing M!!!!! (sorry took so long to read and comment)
May 28th, 2010 at 13:25
I love the descriptive wording that you use in your blogging, I can image the way you describe some dishes what the look, taste like as well as see you enjoying yourself when having these fabulous outings in the Wine lands…
A whole lot of tweeting birds socialising at Haskell | winetimes Says:
January 18th, 2011 at 16:00
[...] day”. They continued the tradition in 2010 and even invited a bunch of wineflies to a private lunch before the official opening of the Long Table Restaurant. The team at Dombeya has always been big [...]