Despite having BlackBerry maps as well as printed directions from the Baxter’s website and Google Maps, we had a slight friendly banter on the way to the event: men, woman and directions. Oi, those three just don’t go together! All’s well that ends well and we arrived with plenty of time to spare.
With it being our first time at the Baxter Theatre we were blown away by the sheer size of it as well as the décor. Of course we were looking for someone to take a photo of us, but for some reason none of the Baxter personnel, and I mean nobody, are allowed to take photos. Strange but true! We eventually managed to find someone willing to take this photo.
On arrival we were met by the marketing manager, Fahiem, a delightfully friendly guy! When he heard that we were from Somerset West he turned to Deon and Leon, tasting staff from Solms Delta, and said; “Get these guys a dop, they’ve come ALL the way from Somerset West!” (only about 30 minutes away!). As luck would have it, he also had his seat right next to us and he was an absolute encyclopedia of information throughout. Thanks Fahiem, you’ve added some extra sparkle to the night!
Taste and Tweet!?! Don’t feel bad if you don’t know what this is, until last night I’ve never heard of it either, but what a brilliant concept. You can get some more info on it here or on twitter at #tasteandtweet. What it boils down to is that a group of like minded people get together taste the food and wine on offer and then tweet their opinion. That then gives others the opportunity to connect on a social level with people that they might never have met and to discover new places and know what to expect in terms of the food and wine on offer. One of the first questions asked to everyone who arrived was: do you tweet?! It was a tweeting frenzy and they even had a projector up to the side so everyone could see what the others were tweeting! It turned out to be so much fun with everyone trying to out-tweet each other.
The main attraction, the reason for actually being there, the food and wine, ensured that everyone had a lot to say!
The food part of the Taste and Tweet was presented by Chef Shaun from Fyndraai Restaurant at Solms Delta. The menu consisted of the most divine canapés: Mini Cajun Beef minute steak on roosterkoek with wild herb pesto, vegetable samosa, sesame tandoori chicken and vegetable skewers, Cape style sausage rolls and (my personal favorite) Blue cheese and caramelised onion puff tart! Yes, it all was as mouthwateringly good as it sounds! If this is any indication of the food on offer at Fyndraai, I will definitely be going there in the near future!
The wine part was presented by Solms Delta. They had a wide variety of excellent quality wines on offer at ridiculously good prices. I would definitely recommend making a stop at the estate whenever you are in the Franschhoek area. The top two that we enjoyed most were Hiervandaan and the Shiraz bubbly. The bubbly also turned out to be the crowds winner of the night and priced at only R80.00 per bottle it is sure to sell like hotcakes!
Leon and Deon who were in charge of tastings at the light whites (Deon) and dry wines (Leon) added so much to the feel of the evening with their knowledge, personality and friendliness. I especially enjoyed Leon with his rich descriptions of the wine, his explanation of the cultivars and what they bring to the wine. He is an absolute gem and I would do a wine tour with him any day!
The food and wine created an atmosphere of relaxation, indulgence and laughter and definitely set us all in good spirits for the show to follow.
The highest level of compliments needs to go to the organizers, Chef Shaun and the Solms Delta staff.
You have brought everything together beautifully to ensure a most memorable evening!