{wine} The charm of Carménère: A Rosé for South Africa

My first love will always be my vibrant country and all that it holds. So, with some help from Lozärn Wines, let’s proudly celebrate everything South Africans love!

Introduction

During this past Valentine’s month, we celebrated those we love and adore and cherish. We showed our appreciation and made them feel super special. On the back of the month of love, Lozärn Wines is extending the feel-goods to everything that we as South Africans love; the things that bind our mix of people together.

I received a box laden with those typical #ProudlySouthAfrican items; some allowed me precious minutes down memory lane, and others brought a smile to my face as I simply can’t live without them. But most of all, in the midst of unpacking this incredible box of love, we are celebrating the release of Lozärn Wines‘ Carménère Rosé 2019, for the true beauty queen that she is! 

Background

Lozärn Wines produces both a single-varietal carménère as well as a rosé carménère. The estate launched their maiden vintage 2016 in December 2017, with just 100 bottles, alongside a 100 per cent Carménère Rosé 2017. The Carménère Rosé 2019 has been released to market recently and in even smaller quantities than the red, only 700 bottles have been produced.

“In previous vintages we brought the grapes in separately for the rosé, but for 2019 I decided to draw off the juice from my red batch after three hours on the skins in the bid to create more intensity in the carménère red wine.”

The 2019 rosé has been sealed with a claret cork. Comments Salóme on the closure: “Since the Lozärn Carménère Rosé is the only one of its kind in South Africa we felt we had to honour this style of rosé and its Bordeaux origin, with the right bottle shape first of all and then the cork is a reflection of who we are as a premium producer, and how our wines have been made to develop and age gracefully (press release).”

Read about our visit to Lozärn Wines here!

Proudly South African

The box was a rainbow mix of treats, and I couldn’t have been more excited! This was in my box:

  • A bottle of South African’s only Lozärn Carménère Rosé 2019
  • LION Matches: to light my perfect braai
  • Chappies & Fizzers: for a welcome trip down memory lane, and to brush up on my general knowledge
  • Mrs Balls Chutney: a true South African icon for so many of our favourite dishes
  • Lucky Star chilli pilchards; one of South Africa’s most well-known brands dating back to 1960
  • Safari dried fruits – Peanuts ; dating back to 1908 in South Africa – a snack that we all rely on ever so often!
  • FUN SOCKS – stand out from the crowd, celebrate your heritage and be proudly South African! And because Faf already monopolised the swimming trunks!

Lozärn Carménère Rosé 2019

My first meeting with Lozärn Wines  and their Carménère Rosé was at Chef’s Santi’s house for a Chef’s Table social dining experience (you can read about the experience here).  Thereafter, our paths crossed again when I visited the home of Lozärn Wines as part of a Magic of Winter media stay to Robertson. We spent a luscious afternoon on the lawns with owners, Grant and Christa Smuts, and woman-in-wine extraordinnaire winemaker, Salóme Buys-Vermeulen, sipping icy glasses of  Carménère Rosé against the backdrop of the vines.

Read about our visit to Lozärn Wines here!

I always knew that Salóme is bottling something incredibly special here in the lush Robertson valley, because the process of making her Carménère Rosé is steeped in hours of passion, many labours of love, years of research and heart-fulls of pure love. No wonder I feel like celebrating every time I hold a stunning bottle of liquid pink gold in my hands.

Tasting notes:  Notes of candyfloss, strawberries and Pink lady apples.
In the vineyard:  Shale soils, 2014 vines
Quantity of this vintage: 700 bottles
Cellar door price:
approx. R120 a bottle, available at www.lozarn.co.za or selected stockists (including Wine at the Mill, Wine Concepts Kloof, Vino Pronto, Hermanus Wine Village, Roeland Liquors and Caroline’s Fine wine).

The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: Feel free to pair your Carménère Rosé with a classic cheese platter. It adores cured, fatty meats and soft, gooey cheeses. Perfect with vegetarian tortellini or even a parma-ham pizza, with lashings of fresh rocket and avo. It will be the perfect side-kick to tapas-style dining, including chorizo bites, marinated artichoke hearts and red peppers, as well as potato salad, bruschetta and fresh summer salads.

Lucky Star and Carménère

Seeing that we are celebrating all the things that South Africans love, I decided to look for inspiration in my box. I was immediately drawn to the bright pink tin of iconic Lucky Star pilchards and started salivating at the thought of how the slight kick of the chilli will be offset against the crisp, sweet flavours of the Carménère Rosé.

Before long, I was in The Little Kitchen, mixing up a batch of fish cakes, adding handfuls of freshly picked fragrant herbs, zingy spring onion, creamy chunks of mashed potato, plentiful grinds of pink pepper corns and free-range eggs. I went all indulgent on these and delicately coated them with a seasoned layer of panko breadcrumbs before carefully shallow frying.

I added a handful of skinny fries (because let’s face it: us Capetownians really like our fish and chips!) and a chilled glass or two of Carménère Rosé.  Served with the ever-reliable side of Mrs. Balls chutney, it was a proper feast.

Conclusion

Sometimes we become so overwhelmed in all the negatives, that we forget to celebrate the things that make us uniquely South African. We have a country so rich and diverse in culture, and we’ve developed this unique way of adapting pieces of each other’s worlds to enrich our own. Let’s take this feeling of love forward, and continue to celebrate South Africa as our year-round Valentine.

Thank you, Lozärn Wines, for reminding us to continue celebrating every element of our country, through our different voices and viewpoints. And thank you for introducing us to the charms of Carménère; and the most beautiful Rosé for South Africa.

#LoveAfrica #LoveSouthAfrica #ProudlySouthAfrican #SouthAfricasOnlyCarmenereRose #IAmStaying #IAmSouthAfrican #InspiredByHeritage #LivingTheLegacy

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.

The Little Hedonist endorses responsible drinking.
Don’t drink and drive. Not for persons under 18.

 

 

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