“Quick!! Bring on the Bubbly!”
I am sure we are all very familiar with the legalities surrounding the name Champagne. The name calling or in this instance, the not so much there of regarding Champagne vs Sparkling Wine.
In 2002, Belgian born Jean-Philippe Colmant (JP) and his wife took a leap of faith and moved from Belgium to the Western Cape. They purchased a five-hectare smallholding, in the heart of the beautiful Franschhoek Valley, with the goal of establishing the first and only Méthode Cap Classique cellar in South Africa.
JP started to implement his ambitious plan. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir vineyards were planted on the farm and plans were drawn up for the first cellar in South Africa solely dedicate to the production of Cap Classique. The construction phase of the cellar had to be done with exceptional attention to very specific detail. The cellar had to allow for the best possible production an optimal maturation capabilities of South Africa’s first bottle fermented Cap Classique. Other areas over and above the Colmant farm was literally handpicked for sourcing grapes to contribute to the process. The cellar was completed in 2005 and the first harvest was done in 2006.
Planning and creating the best bubbly takes unlimited passion and extreme patience. Paul Gerber, one of the best in the bubbly business, joined the team in 2019 taking it from strength to strength. JP and Paul’s passion can be tasted in each bottle they produce. Balance, elegance, and finesse being the best way to describe their exceptional product. Only the traditional champagne varietals of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are used. Pinot Noir are sourced from some of the best regions – Franschhoek, Elgin and Robertson being the major contributors. Majority of the Chardonnay grapes are harvested on the farm, additional grapes are sourced from the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, Bonnievale and Elgin. Both grape types contributing to adding their own unique characteristics and specific qualities to the final product.
The first thought that comes to mind when pairing bubbly is that of elegance, cocktail parties and canapés. African grilled shrimp marinated in chilli, coriander, garlic and lemon definitely my choice to accompany a chilled glass of Colmant Brut Reserve. The spicy lemon combination of the chargrilled shrimp partnering up with the green apple and lemon peel in the Chardonnay. The slight acidity from the Pinot rounded off with a lingering after taste of berries and dark fruit brings everything together beautifully!
If you are a lover of bubbles you will understand the concept of finesse which there is no lack of in every bottle of Colmant.