Where Goats Do Roam
This one's from the Fairview winery in the Paarl Valley of South Africa, and it is made from a blend of seven red grapes. One third of it is Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and the French Cinsaut that's grown primarily in South Africa. Another 22 percent is Shiraz (which, it should be noted, picks up this Australian name in South Africa rather than the French "Syrah"). The rest is a mix of Grenache (13%), Cinsaut (13%), Carignan (10%), Mourvedre (4%) and, of all things, the Gamay of Beaujolais (5%). It's quite a blend - and it results in appealing complexity in the wine.
The wine's yellow label features a rather medieval-looking drawing of a goat - you can view it in the archived edition of this newsletter at http://www.wineloverspage.com/wineadvisor/wax011206.shtml. The picture, and the quirky name of the wine, are explained on the back label: "One afternoon at harvest time, my mischievious son Jason and his friend Justin let the goats out of their tower and sent them for a walkabout amongst the vines. As in the legend of the Yemeni goat herd - whose roaming flock first discovered the joys of coffee beans - they picked out the best and tastiest fruit." (The label doesn't mention it, but the groanworthy pun on "Cotes du Rhone" is too obvious to be a coincidence.)
Fairview 2000 Goats Do Roam Western Cape Red Table Wine ($8.99)
FOOD MATCH: Veal roasted at high heat on a bed of fennel, turnip and potatoes.
WEB LINK: The winery Website, featuring a stunning photo of the property's mountainous setting, is at http://www.fairview.co.za/. The importer's site is at http://www.vineyardbrands.com, with a fact sheet about the Fairview winery at http://www.vineyardbrands.com/brandsheets/fairview.html.
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Thursday, Dec. 6, 2001