Farming artAny one who has been to the Cederberg will know that the area is rich in unique rock formations, a large variety of plants, animals and loads of bushman paintings. Klipopmekaar, a Rooibos Tea Farm and Private Nature Reserve situated in the bio diverse wonderland of the Cederberg mountains is one of these beautiful locations.
The rich history of the Cederberg region and the rooibos farming environment provides inspiration to Richard Bowsher, owner of Klipopmekaar, for a range of fun creative pursuits on the farm.
Together with friends and farm manager Paul, Richard put his creative juices to the test and frequently produces various sculptures and functional creative items from recycled steel, recycled materials and old agricultural objects found on the farm.
Unusually, none of the art that he creates is for sale and some of his ideas and creative concepts are used in the annual AfrikaBurn festival held in the Tankwa-Karoo National Park, like the old windmill that was successfully converted into a light spectacle for the festival. Richard's ethos regarding his art is to simply have fun and explore creativity in the beautiful Klipopmekaar wilderness with anything and everything that can be found locally.
Not only does Richard use recyclable materials in his artworks, but he has also taken Klipopmekaar to the forefront of organic Rooibos farming by installing solar power, environmentally conscious design, entrenched recycling systems and various other conservation projects across the farm.
Visit Klipopmekaar's website for more pictures on Richards' art works or his rooibos tea farm.
Large portions of the city and harbour now cover the old anchorage, beaches and colonial coastal infrastructure and below the surface still lie some of the ships driven ashore (around Woodstock, Paarden Eiland and the sea floor from Greenpoint to Salt River) by strong winter storms.
The discovery by workers of WBHO Construction, consists of a section of the wooden wreck covered by ballast, cannon balls and a small broken cannon.
A team of academics, students and volunteers are carefully brushing soil from the remains of the unknown wreck in an effort to record its structure and collect data that may give clues to its age and identity, while construction activities continue unabated.
'This wreck represents a rare reminder of the secret, and often forgotten, maritime heritage of Cape Town,' said Sahra (South African Heritage Resources Agency).
Source: Engineering News.
Here are some easy tips on how to look the seasoned professional and to take the edge off those nerves:
Step 1: Pour ItA tulip-shaped glass will help capture the aromas and funnel them toward your nose. Fill your glass to about one-quarter or so of the way leaving plenty of room for swirling and space for aromas to build up.
Step 2: Nose ItGive the glass a good swirl (this will help release aromas), put your nose right in there and breathe deeply. Smell is a critical part of taste and therefore the first sniff is usually the most revealing. As the nose experiences the sense of the wines' aroma it will stimulate the palate. If your white wines are poured too cold, you will have difficulty picking out aromas until they warm a bit and the tightly bundled odours reveal themselves.
Some people are more naturally adept at picking out aromas than others, while others are simply bolder about giving voice to their guesses. Identifying underlying flavours often sounds like a poetry reading, but with practice you can teach your nose and palate to identify more aromas and flavours. When cooking, pay special attention to the smell of specific foods (mushrooms, lemons, herbs). The nose has a powerful memory and taking care to notice aromas in the ingredients you prepare will help you pick out aromas in wines, it helps to know that each grape varietal has a few classic aromas.
Here is a list that covers some of the popular red and white varietals:
Tip and Sip ItTake a sip, but before you swallow the wine let it linger a bit in the mouth and then wash the flavours over the palate by either tightening the mouth and breathing in over the wine to send the aromas into the back of the nasal cavity or 'chew' on the wine a bit to move it around the tongue. This will provide sensations such as 'body' (viscosity or weight) and drying sensation due to tannin.
Verbalise what you experience through your senses. No one ever says a wine smells or tastes like grapes, instead there are many other fruits plus vegetables, herbs, spices and minerals that are detected in wine. This is because there are thousands of flavour compounds milling around in that glass that share flavours with other foods. Part of the fun of identifying flavours in wine is being willing to assign to it words that might seem silly or out of place as in the wacky world of wine they are considered attractive.
Going Beyond the BasicsAfter tasting and identifying for a while, aesthetic evaluations such things as the wines' 'balance' (whether the wine's acidity, alcohol, tannins and flavours come together as a pleasurable whole without different parts sticking out unattractively) can be attempted.
The valley itself was founded in 1983 and currently consists of 57 members (49 of these being wineries) in the towns of Ashton, Bonnievale, McGregor and Robertson. This scenic route is a welcome alternative to the busy highways and an opportunity to stock up on fabulous wines - with 50 wineries offering free wine tasting, you're bound to discover many new favourites.
This year's Hands-on Harvest festival held on 24th, 25th and 26th February 2012 in the Robertson Wine Valley offers wine aficionados and budding vintners a chance to experience the magic of harvest for a day - without having to quit their day jobs!
Some of the wineries participating in the 'Hands-On Harvest' are not ordinarily open to the public, and therefore this harvest festival gives the public a chance to enjoy specialised expertise in a series of small, intimate and fun events held on the various farms in the valley. These small events ensure that guests enjoy the best, most personalised 'hands-on' experiences.
Fun activities during the harvest festival include grape picking, bunch sorting, stomping grapes, grape vs wine tasting, a harvest market, vineyard tractor trips, wine blending, picnics, live music and much more. Events need to be pre-booked by 22 February 2012.
Did you know?
Visit the Hands-on Harvest Festival website for more information.
We recently (almost 3 years after implementation) took one of our professional photographer partners (ishoot photography) with us to capture the essence of this very successful landscape. View the fantastic results of this project in the case studies section of our website.
Don't forget to visit the Design Indaba held at the CTICC from 29 Feb to 4 March 2012. For more information visit their website.
Description :Indigenous medium tree to 5m with small white flowers.
Flowering time :Summer / Autumn
View more detailed information on this plant in our plant directory.
Winemaker : Matthew Copeland
Description :A lightly wooded white wine blend of Chenin Blanc, Viognier, Chardonnay and Grenache Blanc and derives its name from a tiny plant unique to the Paardeberg Mountain.
Aroma : Deliciously complex, spicy nose of ginger, jasmine, coconut and peaches.
Palate : Fresh with touches of white pepper, citrus blossom, honey and pears. Mid-palate is smooth and slightly creamy with a fresh, lingering citrus after-taste.
Winemaking : Each wine is fermented separately and matured on the lees for at least 7 months with malolactic fermentation softening acidity and promoting rich, buttery flavours.
Food Pairing : Decanting is recommended to unlock aromas. Enjoy with grilled and tempura style fish, aromatic Thai dishes or chicken flambe pasta followed by soft Italian cheeses.
Seeds can be sown or plants can be planted for the following herbs and veggies this month:
View our full planting plan in our resources section of our website.
We all love a chance to test our own brain capacity with brain teasers. Try see if you can figure out this one...
January's Teaser Answer :
"Moral high ground"
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