Longridge HPG White 2010
An invitation to attend the launch of the first South African digital wine and food menu created thoughts of eating and drinking in cyberspace! I was curious so accepted! The venue was the recently opened Johan’s At Longridge Restaurant at the Longridge Wine estate in Stellenbosch, where I was relieved somewhat to find that we still sat at tables with a normal place setting! What was different however was the menu…instead of the usual leather bound paper variety the menu and wine list were digitally programmed by SAWI (South African Wine Index) on an Apple iPad! Heavier than the paper variety it took a little time to get used to the “weight” of the menu as opposed to the paper alternative but proved a lot of fun exploring all the options for a great dining experience!
For the benefit of showcasing what could be achieved pairing wine and food using the iPad, a set menu prepared by Dutch Chef, Marissa Chandansing, offered 3 wines per course from the Longridge stable of fine wines. For example the first course, an organic garden salad with prawns allowed you to select three wines which the Chef felt would match the dish perfectly: Longridge’s Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and recently released HPG white. By touching the iPad on the menu item brought up the 3 wines and explained how they tasted and then its up to you to select the one you want with the dish! As it was on the evening we were given the opportunity to try all three. My favourite of the three before the salad arrived was the Chenin Blanc which offered magnificent apple, dried pear flavours with lovely balanced acidity. Things changed as they often do when tasting the same wines but now with food! Here the Longridge HPG White excelled with its delicate texture harmonizing beautifully with the prawns and dressing of the organic salad.
Longridge Winemaker, Clinton Le Sueur, makes the HPG from grapes grown in a diversity of cool climates, ranging from Devon Valley, The Helderberg Mountains and Elgin. The temperatures in these areas are moderately cool, with rainy Mediterranean type climate’s with warm summers and gentle breezes from the ocean not far away. The vineyards are set in well drained soils of decomposed shale, calcified sand dunes and Hutton allowing for the growing of top quality grapes.
HPG stands for Hand Picked Grapes from their vineyards and both a red and white are clever new additions to the Longridge range. The HPG White 2010 is a blend of Sauvignon Blanc 32% Viognier 25% Verdelho 22% Chenin Blanc 12 % Chardonnay 9% with a portion of the wine naturally fermented in barrels. The result is a rich elegant wine oozing with melon and litchi aromas leading to fresh clean flavours of tropical fruit with baked apple pie on the finish!
Expect to pay R42.00