Pairing wine with canapés

Saturday April 13 2019

Canapes and wine pairing at Bersig Estate, South Africa.

Canapes and wine pairing at Bersig Estate, South Africa. PHOTO | SUSAN MUUMBI | NMG 

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Bergsig Estate is situated in one of South Africa’s most picturesque valleys, the Breedekloof Wine Valley, at the foot of the Drakenstein and the Hex River Mountains. This was one of our stops on a recent tour of vineyards in the Western Cape of South Africa.

In the middle of the imposing mountain range, we toured the winery, cellars, and the bottling area. The winery produces a large range of award winning red and white wines as well as port and sparkling wine.

We had a taste of Bergsig wines and port, paired with canapés. The first canapés were spring rolls.

The first had spicy jalapeño and blue cheese filling, which we paired with the 2019 sauvignon blanc. This was my favourite as the lemony freshness cooled down the spiciness.

The second spring roll was filled with chicken and vegetables, and paired with a complex chardonnay. We then had the bobotie (curried minced meat) spring roll, paired with the Bergsig Pinotage.

The next canapés were four stuffed meatballs—pork with apple, chicken with sweet pepper, beef with mozzarella, and springbok with brie.

These were paired with the Bergsig Reserve chenin blanc, a chardonnay blend, the cabernet reserve, and the Touriga Nacional. The pork meatball with the chenin blanc was a win for me.

Sweet canapés brought an end to the pairing. Feta cheese with the 2018 rosé, Turkish delight with Gewürztraminer, the 2013 Riesling with fig, and the dark chocolate was paired with the Cape Ruby port.

We mixed these up, trying the Turkish delight with the rosé wine, and, in my opinion, it was a better pairing than with the Gewürztraminer.

Although it’s prudent to take the advice of wine experts when pairing food with wine, try out several combinations to find one you like best.