Smells Like a Ford

Every so not so often, you happen to come across one of those down to the bone awesome people, who just happen to share the same interests that you do (read wine). As if that wasn’t great enough, having met in Cape Town doing what could be our most gruesome course to date (though worth every penny), you happen to move back to Nairobi just as they do too. What are the odds of that? Probably close to impossible. But the odds of splitting countless bottles together… Incredibly high certain!

The Fords just happened to be those people and we’ve had some great times when our paths have crossed.

Not too pleased with them for having come to our home turf and already hosted us for a well thought out lazy Sunday lunch and a rainy entertaining night of wine tasting at their place, we were out for some retaliation! It would be dressed as a harmless late Saturday lunch, with the real intention being drowning them and family in stupendous amounts of outstanding wine (insert evil laugh here).

The plan had not been to have a blind tasting, yet somehow we were all curious to find out how well Mr Ford had maintained his form. He did not disappoint, producing what must certainly be the performance of his life time (I might be embellishing rather rampantly here)!!!!

Almost unfairly, but yet what a treat, we started off with a Grüner Veltliner from Austria. A 2013 from the producer Stift Kloster Neuburg, it’s probably the second or third Grüner Veltliner I’ve ever tried in my short wine life. With fresh tropical and citrus fruit, it was a light pleasant wine to start with. Hosts 1 – Fords 0.


What followed from here should have been familiar to him seeing they were South African. So to get them started, we went with the unusual white LAM from Lammershoek, a blend of Chenin Blanc and Viognier. Being a 2010, she was showing some savoury age, ripe stone fruit, tangerine and some marzipan. He guessed “Swartland Chenin Blanc blend” off the mark… spot on Mr Ford! Hosts 1 – Fords 1. Game on!

For the last white, we went with Black Pearl, one of my dad’s personal favourites. Possibly a 2012 (I really can’t recall at this point), it showed a lot of tropics, think peaches and pineapples but yet fresh acidity. Straight Chenin Blanc, he immediately got the grape variety, but not so region. Hosts 1 – Fords 2.

As we moved to the reds, the temperatures began to plummet, so we brought out some blankets so we could continue our competition. The 2005 Annandale Chalbert Merlot was to grace our palates next. He showed more like a 2010 than a 10-year-old wine; with some firm and intricate tannins, yet silky smooth. Mr Ford went for Bordeaux varieties. We gave it to him. Hosts 1 – Fords 3.

nv_luddite_shiraz07Red two was from Post House, the Penny Black 2007 to be specific. The complexity and layers on this was out of the world. Spice and blueberries. Yet again, fresh as they come! A big blend, it was almost impossible to guess them all: it had Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Hosts 2 – Fords 3.

Finishing off, we had the Luddite Shiraz 2007. A personal favourite vintage for me, it had been two years since the last time I had her, and boy was she still as good as I remembered. Slight white pepper, violets and leather, still very tight with fresh acidity. She was drinking soooo well. I certainly wished we’d started with her before my palate was so well… utilised. But it shone bright and loud for everyone. Mr Ford getting yet another to take the night. Hosts 2 – Fords 4.


And not to worry, we didn’t discriminate against those that were off wine. We had a parallel fruit juice tasting that kept them on their toes. Tasting Litchi, Passion, Pineapple and a blend of mango and mint, they had their pick!

Thanks Dad for allowing us to raid your cellar, mother dearest for the delicious food and all that came, what a night!


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