This weekend we celebrated the 2nd annual Swartland Revolution. I feel deeply blessed and honoured to be a part of the team behind this event. We once again blew our guests away with Swartland hospitality and generosity…
arriving in the Riebeek Valley
I went to Riebeek on Thursday last week to get the town ready. We prepared Bazaar, a multi functional venue next to the town museum, for the Reuben’s BBQ on Friday night. I spent a lot of time on a chair hanging flags and banners from the roof and walls etc (this is usually a job given to the tallest team member, me…)
Thursday night I was lucky enough to share in some amazing wines and vintages that blew me (with my limited wine knowledge) away. We took the trip up the Porseleinberg to Callie and Maree’s house on the hill. I was fortunate enough to get the front seat of the Isuzu with Adi while Jasper and French import Olivier Clape huddled together under a blanket on the back. Adi took no prisoners as he raced up and down the mountain – that was when I heard Olivier say to Jasper “I love this savage land” and thought, TIA welcome to the Swartland…
wining with the winos at Callie’s house on the hill
what we drank that night:
chateauneuf du pape chapoutier 1997 | chateauneuf chateau reserve 2001 | Olivier’s Domaine Clape Cornas 2009 |
Lur Saluces sauternes 1999 (wow!) | lustau palo cortado sherry | Les Vignerons de Maury, Solera 1928 (yes…)
Friday morning we were all in Riebeek by 8am, ready to get the Revolution rolling. Tables needed to be covered, tasting sheets & glasses set up, goody bags packed, wines opened, bazaar finished off, registration set up etc etc. By 4pm we were ready as the first Revolutionaries strolled in to register.
Guests move in for the first tasting – Quality First by Olivier Clape.
We tasted 3 vintages (2009, 2008, 2001) of the Cornas (older vines, 30-80 years) and Renaissance (younger vines, 12, 16, and 25 years old) all 100% Syrah, and each flight from the same vintage. The 2001 was really special with the Cornas being my favourite wine of the weekend!
Michael Fridjhon announces the Bollinger Excellence in Wine Service award.
Bazaar at night
The fire dancer does his thing while the oomies from Baardskeerdersbos Orkes play a beat.
This picture, taken at 11.52pm, is a complete mystery. I can not for the life of me remember taking it, but alas, Joachim Hansi Blackadder – the winner of the Bollinger service award – with Harry Haddon…
Saturday morning started a bit shaky (litterally). I awoke at 8.40am with my shoes on and my phone and money still in my jean’s pockets. I was already almost two hours late (a bit of a fail, but I comfort myself with the fact that I worked really hard on Thu & Fri and needed a bit more sleep if I was going to make it through the rest of the Revolution and the wedding ahead of me…)
Good news awaited me in the shop – gooooo Table Mountain, I frikking LOVE you!
Pre lunch at Bar Bar Black Sheep
Michael Fridjhon auctioning off a 2009 Ouwingerdreeks donated by Eben Sadie (Family Wines)
Michael Fridjhon auctioning off a a 3L White and 5L Red blend from the Badenhorst Family Wine label.
Eben opens the Swartland Independent Street Party by handing over SI decanters to all the producers involved.
And then it was time for me to leave the Revolution and get to the church on time. After borrowing money from Adi (since I had lost my wallet somewhere in the chaos of the night before, and my date/best mate had left his card on his desk at home) and refueling the car we were on our way.
I did not take any pictures at the wedding, which was beautiful and very pin-able (my new term for things worth pinning to Pinterest ie pretty) Nikki looked stunning, we drank lots of red wine (even though my brain gave me a massive stabbing pain with every sip) I spent a good part of the night writing quotes and memories in the book we were supposed to fill with messages for their 6th wedding aniversary and even (after lots more red wine) invented the “6 year game” – let’s just say, that will be a particular memorable anniversary… We played air accordion, mimicked Patrick Swayze’s moves for “I had the time of my life” (lots of fist pumps) and danced into the night.
Sunday morning I awoke on a tiny little couch somewhere on Slanghoek Farm, my body so exhausted it refused to move, my brain so confused I thought I was on Kalmoesfontein and late again…
What a weekend, a great success and a lot of fun. And to be fair, Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes were spot on, I did have the time of my life!
Proteas and flowers from the wedding reception, love brought home!
Rawsonville shop name fail…