Mullineux - 'Straw Wine' 2018

$68.00
Sale price

Regular price $68.00

"The Deep golden straw in colour, with a rich, viscous appearance. The nose and palate is a complex, enticing blend of dried peaches, apricots and marmalade, with savoury, nutty aromas of almonds, marzipan and honey. The intense mouth-feel is balanced by a clean, fresh and very long finish of dried apricots. The wine is best served chilled at 9 to 11 °C.  The secret to our Straw Wine is harvesting Chenin grapes at normal ripeness levels to capture a healthy acidity.  The grapes are dried outside in the shade until they are half raisined, concentrating flavours, acidity and sugar into a super intense, but balanced treat. Fermentation is in old French barrels with indigenous yeasts and can last up to a year.  The wine is bottled unfiltered and unfined."

--------THE PRODUCER--------

Mullineux Wines

Mullineux was established in 2007, when Chris and Andrea Mullineux settled in the Swartland wine region, 60 kilometers north of Cape Town. Within a very short time period the winery established itself as one of South Africa’s most celebrated wine brands, both locally and on the international front. By 2020 the winery had received thirty 5-star ratings from Platter’s South African Wine Guide, as well as being awarded Platter’s Winery of the Year an unprecedented 4 times in 2014, 2016, 2019 and 2020.  
In addition, Andrea was named Wine Enthusiast’s 2016 International Winemaker of the Year and in 2016 Chris & Andrea were Tim Atkin’s South African Winemakers of the Year.  In 2013 Chris & Andrea joined forces with Analjit Singh. Together with founding partner Peter Dart they started a parallel winery in Franschhoek called Leeu Passant.


--------THE GRAPE--------

Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc is a versatile white grape varietal that is producing a wide range of white wines all around the world. Historically, and where it is planted most, is in the Loire Valley of northern France. Here it is famous in Anjou-Saumur particularly in Vouvray, where it is usually found as a sparkling or dry white wine.

 

--------THE REGION--------

Swartland

Swartland is a large wine-producing area 65 kilometers (40 miles) north of Cape Town in the Western Cape of South Africa. Traditionally a wheat-producing region, it now specializes in making rich, fruit-driven wines particularly from the shiraz, chenin blanc and a vast rang of other southern French, Portuguese and Spanish varieties.

Swartland covers a large area, encompassing the vineyards on the northern side of the Paardeberg mountain in the south to the plains of Piketberg in the north. The smaller ward of Riebeekberg and the Kasteelberg Mountain lie in the eastern part of the region, while the cooler district of Darling separates the area from the Atlantic Ocean. The topography is varied, and vineyards can be found on steep mountain foothills or on gently folding hillsides. 

The climate is hot and dry, which viticulturists have used to their advantage in Swartland's vineyards. Dry conditions significantly reduce the risk of fungal diseases among the vines, and a lack of water in the soil leads to lower yields and smaller, more-concentrated fruit. Hardy, drought-resistant bush vines have been utilized in the hottest, driest parts of the region.

The dominant soil type in Swartland is Malmesbury shale, named for the town of Malmesbury that sits in the middle of the region. There are also pockets of granite, particularly around the Paardeberg area. While these soils are well drained, they also hold enough water in their lower reaches to support the irrigation-free farming technique that is used extensively throughout the region. Bush vines will dig especially deep to get to the water reserves in the soil, resulting in stronger vines and particularly concentrated flavours in the grapes.

Swartland (Afrikaans for 'black land') is named for the native renosterbos (rhinoceros bush) that turns black after rain. Chenin Blanc and Shiraz are the most important grape varieties in the region; the latter is often blended with grenache and mourvedre. 

Benefitting from its proximity to Cape Town, the region is well set up for tourists interested in food and wine tasting. It offers a well established wine route (also featuring olive growers) focused around Malmesbury and Riebeek Kasteel.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not lean with high acid.  Rather choose wines with some sweetness, fruit or viscosity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not big tannins but have lots of fruity flavours.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami-rich foods.  They will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are fruity and/or have higher sweetness levels.

Wines that are off-dry like many Gewürztraminers or Rieslings could work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you could consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help to cut down the perception of fattiness.  

These suggestions (there are no rules that apply to everyone) will help you to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that works well by cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity in a Pinot Noir. 

"The Deep golden straw in colour, with a rich, viscous appearance. The nose and palate is a complex, enticing blend of dried peaches, apricots and marmalade, with savoury, nutty aromas of almonds, marzipan and honey. The intense mouth-feel is balanced by a clean, fresh and very long finish of dried apricots. The wine is best served chilled at 9 to 11 °C.  The secret to our Straw Wine is harvesting Chenin grapes at normal ripeness levels to capture a healthy acidity.  The grapes are dried outside in the shade until they are half raisined, concentrating flavours, acidity and sugar into a super intense, but balanced treat. Fermentation is in old French barrels with indigenous yeasts and can last up to a year.  The wine is bottled unfiltered and unfined."

--------THE PRODUCER--------

Mullineux Wines

Mullineux was established in 2007, when Chris and Andrea Mullineux settled in the Swartland wine region, 60 kilometers north of Cape Town. Within a very short time period the winery established itself as one of South Africa’s most celebrated wine brands, both locally and on the international front. By 2020 the winery had received thirty 5-star ratings from Platter’s South African Wine Guide, as well as being awarded Platter’s Winery of the Year an unprecedented 4 times in 2014, 2016, 2019 and 2020.  
In addition, Andrea was named Wine Enthusiast’s 2016 International Winemaker of the Year and in 2016 Chris & Andrea were Tim Atkin’s South African Winemakers of the Year.  In 2013 Chris & Andrea joined forces with Analjit Singh. Together with founding partner Peter Dart they started a parallel winery in Franschhoek called Leeu Passant.


--------THE GRAPE--------

Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc is a versatile white grape varietal that is producing a wide range of white wines all around the world. Historically, and where it is planted most, is in the Loire Valley of northern France. Here it is famous in Anjou-Saumur particularly in Vouvray, where it is usually found as a sparkling or dry white wine.

 

--------THE REGION--------

Swartland

Swartland is a large wine-producing area 65 kilometers (40 miles) north of Cape Town in the Western Cape of South Africa. Traditionally a wheat-producing region, it now specializes in making rich, fruit-driven wines particularly from the shiraz, chenin blanc and a vast rang of other southern French, Portuguese and Spanish varieties.

Swartland covers a large area, encompassing the vineyards on the northern side of the Paardeberg mountain in the south to the plains of Piketberg in the north. The smaller ward of Riebeekberg and the Kasteelberg Mountain lie in the eastern part of the region, while the cooler district of Darling separates the area from the Atlantic Ocean. The topography is varied, and vineyards can be found on steep mountain foothills or on gently folding hillsides. 

The climate is hot and dry, which viticulturists have used to their advantage in Swartland's vineyards. Dry conditions significantly reduce the risk of fungal diseases among the vines, and a lack of water in the soil leads to lower yields and smaller, more-concentrated fruit. Hardy, drought-resistant bush vines have been utilized in the hottest, driest parts of the region.

The dominant soil type in Swartland is Malmesbury shale, named for the town of Malmesbury that sits in the middle of the region. There are also pockets of granite, particularly around the Paardeberg area. While these soils are well drained, they also hold enough water in their lower reaches to support the irrigation-free farming technique that is used extensively throughout the region. Bush vines will dig especially deep to get to the water reserves in the soil, resulting in stronger vines and particularly concentrated flavours in the grapes.

Swartland (Afrikaans for 'black land') is named for the native renosterbos (rhinoceros bush) that turns black after rain. Chenin Blanc and Shiraz are the most important grape varieties in the region; the latter is often blended with grenache and mourvedre. 

Benefitting from its proximity to Cape Town, the region is well set up for tourists interested in food and wine tasting. It offers a well established wine route (also featuring olive growers) focused around Malmesbury and Riebeek Kasteel.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not lean with high acid.  Rather choose wines with some sweetness, fruit or viscosity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not big tannins but have lots of fruity flavours.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami-rich foods.  They will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are fruity and/or have higher sweetness levels.

Wines that are off-dry like many Gewürztraminers or Rieslings could work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you could consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help to cut down the perception of fattiness.  

These suggestions (there are no rules that apply to everyone) will help you to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that works well by cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity in a Pinot Noir.