Scholtzenhof in Stellenbosch

Crisis in restaurantland, hotels te koop, sterrenchefs buigen hun formule om van nouveau riche naar nouveau ruig. De Telegraaf stond er weer bol van dit weekeinde, op Twitter lijken de 140 Tweet-tekens soms nergens anders meer over te gaan.
Maar …… er is nog hoop voor alle restaurateurs en hoteliers in de wereld die zich ‘uitleven’ in de Hospitality industry! Doe als Ken Forrester en hang je pak aan de wilgen, de wijnkaart er naast  en stap in de mysterieuze wereld die wijn heet! Verdiep je in het maken van de wijn!

“Could Ken Forrester have known what he was getting himself into when he gave up a successful career in the hospitality industry to acquire Stellenbosch property Scholtzenhof in 1993 and begin wine farming?

ANC leader Nelson Mandela had been released from prison in 1990 and South Africa’s first free and fair elections would take place in 1994 – the roller-coaster ride that has been the modern era of South African wine industry was just beginning.

Forrester, now 55 years old, can certainly count himself as one of the key figures in the Chenin Blanc renaissance. The FMC (current release 2010 selling for R325 a bottle from the tasting room) is arguably one of South Africa’s most famed bottlings at the top end of the market today but he provides versions of the grape which represent great quality relative to price at all market levels.

His next challenge he’s set himself is to gain the sort of public acceptance for his Rhône-style reds that his examples of Chenin have earned. “The greatest single problem we face in South Africa is that we harvest in the peak of summer whereas the rest of the world harvests in autumn,” he says. “We are undoubtedly a Mediterranean climate and hence we should be using Mediterranean varieties such as Grenache and Mourvèdre – they’re late ripening and with the aid of little irrigation can survive our harsh summers.”

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