The Elusive Elgin

I love Elgin. But I don’t think she loves me as much. Deciding the night before that I’ll be venturing out that way, and only getting to call the farms on the morning to book an appoint for a few hours later, I’m often met with surprise and disappointment! I do understand though: with scanty traffic going up that way and limited number of staff, impromptu tastings become quite a mission. So you need not worry those that have turned me away, I’ll be back and shall try you yet again, with probably as little prior notice ūüėÄ . For those that do manage to make a plan and indulge me, I’m eternally grateful; I know at times it isn’t easy, thanks for accommodating my haphazard nature.

Last time I headed out there, I called William Everson, as per my tradition, earlier that day just as he was about to board a plane out of Cape Town. Unreasonably apologetic, he further lamented he could only make, said plan, about 3 hours later. That sounded great to me: I could indulge in some delicious Winter’s Drift Chardonnay followed by the seductive Mountain Reserve white blend from Oak Valley¬†before getting to try something utterly new to me. Further still we stayed for lunch at the Pool Room¬†where I had a rather tantalizing pork belly! What a day.

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Finally getting to Everson’s, yet a little early again, “the plan”, a lively Mr. Lendl, though flustered by our eagerness, was a remarkable host from the get go! Enlisting Mrs. Everson to momentarily occupy us with a short walk through the once vineyards on the property, he hurriedly set up the cider (yes they produce Everson’s Cider) and wine tasting at the foyer of the cellar. He exuded the brand from all corners and in all of his communication. He was also quick to acknowledge if he didn’t have the answer to any of my myriad of questions. Further still, he read us adequately as guests and knew exactly who to engage with playful insults (myself), and subtle respectful patience (rest of my family). This is exactly who you’d need/want at the helm of your marketing in any organisation!

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We started off with freshly squeezed Apple juice, then followed by their Everson’s Cider range. Being originally from the school of thought that Ciders were rather girlie ūüôĀ , I was pleasantly surprised (and converted) at how “quaffably” refreshing they were. The Apple Cider tasted remarkably like the freshly squeezed Apple juice; the Pear Cider I found more floral; the Cloudy Cider was sweeter and fresh; the Mulled Cider was spicy and tangy; and the Single Varietal Cider (that I tried at home months later) was simply sublime, dry and poised.

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Of the two Shiraz they offered, I marginally preferred the 2009 sourced from Elgin vines as opposed to the 2008 from Paarl. The former had slightly more intricate structure and portrayed darker fruits, where as the later was more earthy and mineral. Their other wines (Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Shiraz/Mourvedre, Cabernet Sauvignon etc) all sourced from differing locations were unfortunately sold out, but nonetheless we had an awesome day out!

Let’s go out there more often. Stop the over reliance on Stellies. I urge this just so that they can be more farms open and I can get to indulge my selfish whims whenever the itch arises!

To book an appointment with them (something I strongly suggest) you can reach them on: and +27(0) 82 554 6357.


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