Occasionally, the stars are aligned and something delectable is on offer and one is included in a select few.
The occasion was a visit to Jacobsdal a family-owned winery in Stellenbosch, to taste their range and for lunch. The privilege? Jacobsdal is not open to the general public…..
Our gracious hosts, the Dumas family has been making wine on the estate for three generations with present owner Cornelis Dumas being helped by his son Hannes.
Cornelis and Hannes Dumas eyeing their handcrafted wine
Jacobsdal only makes two wines, a Cabernet Sauvignon and (of course!) a Pinotage. They hand-make their wines and only use natural yeasts.
We tasted eight vintages of Jacobsdal Pinotage from their 1997 to the 2014, which is their current vintage in bottles, and six vintages of Jacobsdal Cabernet Sauvignon from 2001 to the 2014, its current bottled vintage.
It was rewarding to smell and taste the often subtle differences across the vintages and it would be easy to give detail impressions of each. But, as I am not sure that all the wines we tasted are still available for purchase, I’ll give a general impression of only two of them, if I may? To check on the availability of the Jacobsdal vintages, I suggest you visit: https://www.vinoteque.co.za/collections/jacobsdal
Jacobsdal started out only making Pinotage before adding Cabernet Sauvignon, so let me start with the Jacobsdal Pinotage 2013.
The Jacobsdal Pinotage 2013 offers dark berries and dark plums on the nose and a hint of spice. It comes across on the lightish side, but is well balanced and elegant. I tasted it on its own and could see it doing well with venison or a meaty stew. A very drinkable and enjoyable Pinotage.
The Jacobsdal Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 is full boded and generous with fruit flavours, it gives dark berries on the nose and a hint of vanilla from light oaking. It too would go well with a meaty stew.
Two really well made wines, generous on the palate with or without food.
We tasted the Jacobsdal range on its own and then paired with lunch.
Talking about lunch…..our invitation was to Jacobsdal Wine Estate, so the balance of this post must necessarily be the wine. But the lunch came to us from Executive Chef Jean Delport from Somerset-West restaurant Benguela on Main.
The plating, the food, the creativity and the pairing made for one of the best dining experiences I’ve ever had in this country.
If this is an example of what to expect from Chef Delport, I’ll definitely be adding a visit to Benguela on Main to my 2017 bucket list.
Too often one visits wine estates that exudes far too little of a sense of being a farm – the genuine warmth, passion and generosity that makes a farm visit so special. Jacobsdal did more than just tick those boxes!!
Baie dankie Dumas gesin!