I’m a practical gift-giver. Not that soap-on-a-roap or a pair of hot-pink flamingo socks are not practical, but your dad can only fit so many soaps in the shower and socks in his cupboard. Here’s my top three recommendations for excellent wine gifts for dad this Father’s Day and handy tips on how to turn a bottle of wine into a feast, even when you’re on a budget!
Fathers come in different shapes and sizes
For me, Father’s Day is so much more than a celebration of one’s biological father; there are so many ways of selflessly accepting and embracing the privilege of being a father-figure in someone’s life. For me, it’s a celebration of men and women around the world who are doing their utmost best every day to love, cherish and provide for a child of some sort; whether biological or not; whether furry or not. Today I salute all of you who must fill big father shoes (whether voluntary, by choice or by chance!) for your continuous efforts to grow and nurture our children, whichever shape or form they might take.
The art of gift-giving
I have a bit of an issue with these commercialised celebrations, like Father’s Day and Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day and every other money-making day. Advertisements are worded to make you nervously worried whether you got the “perfect gift.” Surely dad needs another toolbox or a pair of designer cycling shorts? Surely he could use a fancy electric razor or a DIY grow-it-yourself-herb box or beer brewing kit?
So, back to practical, meaningful gifts. I was so excited for this press-drop from Groote Post and FAT Bastard Wines, because they’ve got your back. If your dad is a wine enthusiast, connoisseur or aficionado, then I have just the gift suggestions for him. These will score you serious brownie points and there will be no scurry to find the receipts to return those dreaded gimmicky Father’s Day gifts…plus, it holds liters of sentiment and is infused with dedication, hard work and good memories.
Groote Post: The Old Man’s Blend Wines
The Old Man’s Blend range came into being in 2001 at the request of Groote Post’s ‘Old Man’, Peter Pentz, who asked the family to blend him a red wine to enjoy as his winter evening tipple. The enormous popularity of The Old Man’s Blend Red established a Groote Post tradition, with The Old Man’s Blend White subsequently added to the range.
Groote Post’s The Old Man’s Blend White 2018
In the vineyard: Blend of Sauvignon and Chenin Blanc
In the cellar: The varietals are vinified separately, then blended in different ratios until the blend meets The Old Man’s approval.
Tasting notes: Displaying gorgeous tropical fruit notes, a fresh lively acidity livens the palate and lovely guava and green apple flavours linger on the finish.
Approximate retail price: R73
The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: Because this white blend is such a crowd-pleasing, beautifully smooth and flavoursome wine, you can dress it up or down, depending on the occasion. Dressed up and chilled to perfection, it’s a flawless companion for lighter meals, like salads, soups, chicken or fish dishes. Think lightly grilled and buttered prawns, a gorgeously herby roasted chicken, served with caramelised roasted veggies. You can even pair it Asian food or dessert! A brightly coloured vegetable stir-fry with lashings of lemon juice, soya sauce and cashew nuts would only take minutes to make for your dad, but will surely make him feel special and appreciated. If you want to dress it down and keep it simple, I paired this white blend with an assortment of dried tropical fruit, caramelised popcorn and nuts to enhance the natural fruitiness and rich undertones of the blend.
Groote Post’s The Old Man’s Blend Red 2017
In the vineyard: Blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Cabernet Franc
In the cellar: During the winemaking and wood maturation, the cultivars are kept apart, and The Old Man takes part in rigorous tasting sessions to decide on the final blend.
Tasting notes: This is a down-to-earth, ripe-fruit-driven blend. Cherry, mulberry and cedar wood are prominent on the nose with soft tannins on the palate giving a smooth finish.
Approximate retail price: R76
The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: Again, a beautiful quaffing wine filled with smooth winter flavours, but it’s complexity should not be oversimplified or underestimated. Now I’m thinking simply seasoned red meats, like steaks, stews, bobotie or, if the weather allows, smoky lamb chops from the braai. Or even a simple cheese and charcuterie platter would pair beautifully – be sure to add moist biltong slices, cocoa dusted dark chocolate almonds, plump calamata-style olives, fresh ciabatta chunks and a few soft cheeses and a mature cheddar to round off the experience.
Fat Bastard: The Golden Reserve 2017
The cute, chunky golden hippo never disappoints – yet another new addition to the FAT Bastard Wine pod is the glamorous Golden Reserve 2017. If you have a bit of extra pocket money this month, it’s worth every cent! This Bordeaux-style red blend is bold, classy, deliciously trendy and completely unapologetic.
In the vineyard: The Cabernet Sauvignon / Merlot blend was made from specially selected grapes with the aim to produce ripe-flavoured and silky textured wine.
In the cellar: All fruit was gently pressed to retain fruit aromas and character. The wine was aged in small oak barrels to add greater weight and complexity.
Tasting notes: The wine has an intense, dark ruby colour. Luxurious aromas and flavours of dark berry fruit and plum entice the senses. The palate of the wine is rich and full, with a silky and lasting finish.
Approximate retail price: R110 – R120
The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: The food pairing options are endless, but I’m looking for something that will match the mellifluous nature of this bold gold. I see a gorgeous plate of sautéed forest mushrooms served on hearty polenta or a deliciously velvety mushroom risotto. Oversized butternut or slow-cooked beef ravioli in a rich tomato sauce. A homemade chorizo and olive pizza, with oven-roasted red peppers and shavings of parmesan cheese. But – let’s be bold and go completely to the other side of the spectrum – decadent chocolate brownies that stick to your palate. Freshly baked chocolate chip cookies – the darker the chocolate the better! I paired mine with my home-made, flop-free dark chocolate, cranberry and almond biscotti…yum!
Whatever you choose to do this Father’s Day – whether it’s going all-out or keeping it simple – I’m sure it will be just perfect. I mean, if it’s done with a heart full of love – what more can one ask for?
Disclaimer: I was given this product(s) as part of a press drop in exchange for my honest and truthful opinion and review thereof. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are solely those of The Little Hedonist, given in good faith and in no way influenced by the company or its affiliates. All images, unless otherwise stated/credited, are also my own.