Taste Test of Wine List Winners of South Africa

(Bushman’s Kloof Wilderness Reserve Wine Cellar)

The Red Carnation Hotel Collection South Africa (RCH) received top scores for its’ restaurant wine lists in the newly introduced South African Wine List of the Year Awards that were announced recently.

The luxury collection of family-run boutique hotels in South Africa: The Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa; Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Retreat; and The Oyster Box, each received ‘Three Flutes’ – the highest accolade in this competition, in the category ‘Long Wine Lists’. Three flutes required a final score of above 86%, while the Long Wine Lists competition was open to entries from restaurants with a minimum selection of 81 wines per wine list. A stock holding of what may reasonably be expected to be consumed in 10 days, was a prerequisite too, whilst the wine lists had to be in use at the time of entering into the competition, and all wines had to be available for a minimum of four months.

According to the convenors of the awards, Michael Olivier and Michael Bampfield Duggan from ‘M Squared’, the content, balance, suitability and presentation of each wine list were taken into consideration during judging, in an effort to encourage establishments to further improve the standards of their wine lists. Entries to the awards were open to all five star licensed restaurant venues, hotels, wine bars, pubs, game lodges and trains in South Africa. Judges included some of the country’s most prominent wine writers: Cathy Marston, Dr Bill Gallagher, Myrna Robins, Ntsiki Biyela, Dr Jim and Catherine Boutell Coackley, Ginette de Fleuriot, Rey Franco, Ingrid Motteaux, Allan Mullins and Anna Trapido.

Horst Frehse, General Manager, The Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa said that it was an honour for the Red Carnation Hotel Collection in South Africa to receive this prestigious endorsement: ‘We at Red Carnation take a very dedicated, serious and delicious approach to our food and wine offering. We take only the finest prime, and freshest ingredients, then passionately cook and serve them with skill, flair, and imagination in a choice of exquisite and varied dining venues. Our cuisine is always accompanied by a supreme choice of wines under the watchful eyes of our award-winning chefs and sommeliers, who certainly know how to turn a meal into a memorable event.’

Each of the three the South African Red Carnation Hotels are also regular winners of the Diners Club Wine List of the Year competition. Bushmans Kloof’s wine selection currently includes 212 wines, while Azure Restaurant at The Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa has 206 wines on its wine list, and The Grill Room at the Oyster Box, has over 248 wines.

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