SHAPE OF A GLASS

Wine has always played an important part in my life. As a symbol of enjoyment, finesse, elegance and celebration it enhances conversation and meals. Food pairing thus meant that wine is chosen to complement respective dishes; so I thought. Glass shapes mattered, mostly because of convention. My last two visits to Creation Wines, however, highlighted the prominence of wine.

Food, well chosen, highlight the subtle tasting notes of each varietal. The shape of the glass matters … a lot. The wrong glass can result in a disappointing experience with even a premium wine. And it is not only a matter of large glasses for red wine and slightly smaller ones for white. The traditional white wine glass is very well suited to the profile of a Sauvignon Blanc. The slight upward tilt necessitated by the tapered opening results in delivery to the front of the tongue, precisely where sugar is discerned. Viola, a perfect blend of acidity and sweetness, pleasing to the palate.

Using the same glass for Chardonnay? The richer and more opulent varietal needs to activate the acid receptors on the side of the mouth to be properly savoured. As a Chardonnay afficionado, I was pleasantly surprised when I experienced its taste in the larger, less tapered glass, sometimes associated with red wine, although shorter. I immediately vowed to add them to the collection. As you can guess. The same is true for red wine. The wrong glass can render even the best Pinot Noir “tanniny”, while pouring it into the proper vessel brings out the fruit with just enough tannin to add body. Enough said.

The beautiful and functional Riedel wine glasses were designed to be the perfect conduit between the human taste experience and the profile of each variety. Developed in conjunction with sommeliers and winemakers, Riedel’s glasses are a marriage between craftmanship and science. The glassmaker manages to hold proportionality in creative tension with design elements required to elevate, the taste, texture, bouquet and flavour of the wine, providing the ultimate connoisseur’s experience.

All this and healthy, tasty dishes, locally sourced and chosen to enhance immunity and keep blood sugar levels low are just what I have come to expect of Creation Wines’ events. Meticulous attention to detail, beautiful and tranquil surroundings and a tasting room resplendent with nature, bespoke art and light conspire to leave all visitors with a sense of well-being and optimism.

When the first course (healthy shooter) was introduced with: “…feeling like you are standing naked under a waterfall” all of us knew that we were in for a sense adventure par excellence. The knowledge that simply relaxing by listening to the sound of the waves in a seashell changes taste perception capped an evening that touched every aspect of our humanness. Long tables introduced us to friends we had not yet met, interesting facts and explanations stimulated the mind and deeply satisfying taste explosions created the perfect masterpiece.

Aloma Jonker – Beautifully Curated July 27, 2022

CREATION WINES: A DISTINCTIVE ENTERPRISE

Creation Wines need no introduction. The top ranked winery in Africa also ranked among the top ten global wine destinations in 2021; and this after Covid! What made this possible? Such achievements result from sustained effort in the direction of lasting values. For Creation’s founders, JC and Carolyn Martin these consist of:

  • blending sustainability and innovation
  • working with nature and enhancing its beauty
  • investing in people, through inter alia community projects, training and upskilling staff
  • ensuring that everything they do is imbued with beauty, elegance, finesse and distinction
  • balancing commercial needs with personal tenets of creating a quality product, buildinga lasting legacy and enhancing the lives of all stakeholders, be they: clients, shareholders, employees, suppliers, the community, the environment and the country as a whole.The final point is key. No business is ultimately sustainable unless it creates wealth1 for all. Carolyn Martin positions it well when she suggests that it is important to ensure that everyone flourishes… and this is not simply lip service. At Creation Wines this maxim informs action.Creation’s success belie the notion that exploitation and a short term financial focus are necessary to excel at business. Starting with the vines, chosen because they are well suited to the geology and weather and then naturally cultivated, the philosophy espoused by the Martins challenge traditional thinking. Their projects have a long term focus, to cultivate virus free vineyards that will eventually become old vines; an inheritance for heirs and the South African wine industry alike.Instead of chasing volumes, Creation Wines emphasise excellence and finesse. Rather than utilise every possible piece of land, parts are left fallow to allow fynbos to flourish.
    Airy, drenched in natural light, tastefully decorated incorporating art and nature, the contemporary tasting room at Creation relaxes the mind while stimulating the senses, reconnecting guests to nature, themselves and each other. Food pairings titillate the palate with local ingredients that boost the immune system and keep blood sugar levels low. Wine professionals inform and entertain with enthusiasm, the result of deep investment in staff that goes beyond skills development to concern for personal and communal well-being. The result: clients leave feeling revitalised. Undeniably a win-win-win-win-win-win2 combination.Clearly it is possible. Creation’s standards are high. Perhaps that is the secret. By refusing to compromise the Martins have created an enterprise that is an example not only for others in the wine industry, but other enterprises, be they agri-business oriented or not. They prove that profitability, compassion, craftmanship, attention to beauty and wise stewardship of nature can be integrated. Come to think of it, this combination connotes prosperity, does it not ?1 Wealth connotes access to resources, not necessarily ownership thereof.
    2 Should it need explanation: the Creation Wines’ approach benefits their business, patrons, staff and family, the environment, community and the country at large.

Aloma Jonker – Beautifully Curated 6 July 2022