Wine and Dine

Sushi – Bait for the soul

The belly rules the mind is old Spanish proverb and I believe there is a lot of truth in this saying.

Exploring your own tastes and preferences is part and parcel of discovering interesting dishes.

Many people say that as a child their family’s menu consisted of two choices:  take it or leave it. Luckily as adults we have a choice.

Sushi is not everyone favourite and some people believe that it must be called bait and not food.

I disagree and love sushi. It is healthy, interesting and has an abundance of tastes. I have not mastered the art of making sushi as I’m still learning from some great online articles and clips.

Here’s a shortlist of some sushi variants:

Nigirizushi- The most typical is sticky rice flavoured with vinegar and topped with raw, or fresh, fish (sashimi). The rice is formed by hand in a clump and the fish or grilled egg is placed on top. Sometimes the fish or egg is secured by a strip of seaweed. Complimented by wasabi, also known as Japanese horseradish, most restaurants serve nigirizushi in pairs.

Makizushi – Rice wrapped in seaweed (nori) with vegetables or seafood make this a favourite.

Temakizushi – Literally this translates as sushi for your hand. Vegetables and fish are placed in a pocket of seaweed.

Inarizushi – Easy to eat, this rice flavoured with sweet rice wine is inserted in a pouch made of tofu.

Chirashizushi – This seasoned rice is served in a bowl with mushrooms, carrots, other vegetables, and strips of seaweed.

In general, sushi will pair well with dry white wines and The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc is the perfect choice. This wine has a powerful, perfumed nose of sweet fruit with green pepper and grassiness.


Salads- Finding the perfect balance

When deciding on a salad, the main challenge is to find a balance to get an exciting dish which is also easy to prepare. 

Sometimes salads can be boring as the same old recipes are regurgitated. But on the other hand some ‘new’ salads are so complicated with unusual and hard to find ingredients that it’s a nightmare to prepare.

I found this great and interesting recipe which is ‘fresh’ yet easy to make.

Green Apple and Watercress Chicken Salad


- 1/2 cup mayonnaise 

- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 

 - salt and black pepper 

- 1kg rotisserie chicken , chopped 

- 4 cups watercress, thick stems discarded 

- 1 Granny Smith apple, thinly sliced 


-In a large bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. 

- Toss with the chicken, watercress, and apple slices. 


Picnic- Food for the soul

The pace of life is getting to me as everything seems to be rushed and deadline orientated. So in order to get a grip, my suggestion is to escape for a while and enjoy a beach break.

Or alternatively, you can arrange a nice picnic with good food and wine.

Keep it simple and tranquil and try to relax as this will do wonders for your soul.

Picnic Idea

Prepare a main course and buy the rest as you do not want to slave away preparing for the picnic.


-          Baguette and cheeses (brie, camembert etc.)

-          Potato chips

-          Cherry tomatoes

-          Fruit ( peaches, apricots, plums, naartjies)

-          Wine

Recommended wine: The fresh and versatile Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay will complement the dish and will be perfect for your picnic.

Recipe : Eggplant pasta salad


 3 tablespoons olive oil

2 celery stalks, sliced

1 eggplant , cut into 1cm pieces

400ml grape/ plum tomatoes, halved

1/4 cup tomato paste

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

salt and black pepper

1 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoons capers

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted (optional)

1 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped

450g dried penne



  -1) Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the celery and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the eggplant and tomatoes.

-2) In a small bowl, combine the tomato paste, vinegar, ¼ cup water, 2 ½ teaspoons salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and the sugar. Stir into the eggplant mixture.

-3) Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant is tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

-4) Remove from heat and stir in the capers, pine nuts (if desired), and parsley.

-5) Meanwhile, cook the penne according to the package directions. Toss with the remaining oil; let cool. Combine with the eggplant mixture and serve.


The Only Cin- Food blogger / recipe of the month

We have picked Cindy Taylor as our food blogger of the month due to her delicious Spaghetti Carbonara recipe.

Cindy is the editor of the hugely entertaining food blog , The only Cin, and her writing and recipes deserve this prize.

Here is her easy and mouth watering Spaghetti Cabonara   recipe:


  • 1 packet  spaghetti
  • 6 baby marrows, cut into thin strips
  • 1 dash  olive oil, for frying
  • 1 packet  back bacon, cut into strips
  • 2 cloves of garlic, or 3, finely chopped
  • 4 large free range eggs, beaten
  • 125 ml pecorino cheese, finely grated
  • 1 pinch salt and milled pepper



Cook pasta according to packet instructions. Add baby marrows 2 – 3 minutes before the end of cooking. Drain and set aside.

Heat a glug of oil in a large pan and fry bacon until crispy.

Remove and drain on kitchen paper.

Drain excess fat from pan and fry garlic for a minute.

Add pasta, baby marrows and bacon to pan and toss well.

Remove pan from heat. Quickly stir through the eggs, mixing until they begin to thicken, but not scramble.

Add cheese, season and serve.

** Pecorino is a hard rind cheese similar to parmesan, originally made from sheep’s milk.

Recommended wine:  The Arniston Bay Chardonnay will be the perfect pairing with this pasta dish. 

Cindy Taylor:


A salad with the ‘wow’ factor

Sometimes salads can lack the ‘wow’ factor and are too bland and unimaginative. But this shrimp salad is fantastic and functional as it combines simple ingredients to make a delightful  meal.

I’ll recommend the Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé . This versatile and easy drinking wine will pair well with this meal .

Recipe:  Spinach, Shrimp, and Avocado Salad


 - 3 tablespoons lemon juice 

 - 3 tablespoons olive oil 

- 1 tablespoon chopped capers 

- 1/2 teaspoon honey 

- salt and black pepper 

- 8 cups spinach 

- 500g cooked, peeled, and deveined medium shrimp 

- 4 plum tomatoes, chopped 

- 1 avocado, sliced 


1.      – In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, oil, capers, honey, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. 

2.      – In a large bowl, toss the spinach, shrimp, tomatoes, and avocado with the vinaigrette. 


Quick and delicious recipe: Chicken with creamy mushrooms

Life can be such a rush and often we feel that we don’t have time to prepare a decent meal. But the truth is there are great recipes for amazing dishes where the total preparation time is less than 20 minutes.

For some people making food can be therapeutic and helps them to unwind.  Here’s a great recipe which is simple, quick and really delicious

Recommended wine: Arniston Bay Chardonnay 2010 . This is a fruity wine with good acidity and some toasty, spicy complexity from well judged oak. Really attractive with lots of character and elegance.


  • 8 small chicken cutlets (700g pounds total)
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 400g  sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley



  1. - Season chicken with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
  2. - Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook chicken in batches until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to plates.
  3. - Add mushrooms and remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender, 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. - Stir in heavy cream, goat cheese, parsley, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve over the chicken



Chicken cutlets with tomato sauté

Chicken recipes are sometimes to extravagant and complicated because chefs suggest that you must add a number of different herbs and spices. Here is a nice and easy recipe with just the right amount of extras. 

With this meal I would suggest the well balanced Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2010. This wine has grassy and green pepper undertones with a good crispy and lengthy finish which will definitely complement this dish.


  • - 750g  small chicken cutlets (8 to 12)
  • - Salt and pepper
  • - 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • - 700 ml grape or cherry tomatoes
  • - 3/4 cup dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
  • - 4 spring onions, sliced
  • - 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary



  1. -Season the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in 2 batches, cook the chicken until browned and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side; transfer to plates.
  2. -Add the tomatoes to the skillet and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until they begin to burst, 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. -Add the wine and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the spring onions and rosemary and serve with the chicken.

Source: realsimple

Food blogger recipe of the month: Chili Risotto with Crispy Calamari

This month’s recipe / food article (blogger) of the month is Alida Ryder for her mouth watering Chili Risotto with Calamari recipe.

Alida creates the most amazing recipes and the way she presents it on her blog is so appetising and looks extremely delicious.

Alida’s blog ( ) is also nominated for a SA Blog award in the Food and Wine category and we wish her the best of luck as she definitely deserves to be a finalist.

Recommended wine:

The Arniston Bay Chardonnay will pair perfectly with this creamy, chilly spicy calamari  dish.

Here is the recipe:

Chili Risotto with Crispy Calamari

Serves 4


- 2 leeks, finely chopped

- 2 tbsn butter

- 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced

- 2 cups Risotto rice

- 250ml white wine

- 1-1.5l chicken stock

- 1/2 cup cream

- 2 fresh chillies, finely chopped or use as much crushed chillies as you can handle.

- 1 cup grated parmesan/pecorino

- Salt and pepper to taste

- 500g baby squid and calamari steak cut into strips

- 15ml cajun spice mixed with 4tbsn flour

- oil for deep frying


  • - In a large pot/pan,  fry the leeks in the butter until soft. Add the garlic and fry for another minute or two.
  • - Add the rice and stir, coating the rice with the oil. Add the wine and allow to reduce
  • - Now, add the stock ladle by ladle. Stirring in between and allowing the rice to absorb the stock. The rice shouldn’t be completely dry before you add more, it should always be moist. Take care not to stir too much as you don’t want it to go stodgy.
  • - Meanwhile, coat the squid and calamari with the seasoned flour.  Try to get the squid as dry as possible before coating with the flour, otherwise it will go a bit gloopy.
  • - Heat the oil in a pot/wok and fry the squid and calamari until crisp. Set aside.
  • - Finish the risotto by adding the cream, chillies and cheese.
  • - Serve in bowls topped with a handful of the squid and calamari and some extra chillies and cheese.



Alida Ryder

Spiced pork chops with red cabbage and raisins

Pork chops is probably one of the most underrated dishes. It is easy to prepare and it is very versatile. This recipe is and nice and easy recipe for a spicy pork chops with some cabbage and raisins. Truly divine.

Recommended wine: I would serve the Arniston Bay Shiraz 2008. This is a full bodied wine with intense dark colour subtle smoky and pepper spice nose with strong full middle palate and good tannin structure. Good finish with hints of coffee and chocolate in the aftertaste

Serves 4

Total Time: 25min



  • - 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • - 4 bone-in pork rib chops (about 2.5cm thick; 500g total)
  • - 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • - salt and black pepper
  • - 1 onion, sliced
  • - ½ small head red cabbage, thinly sliced (about 6 cups)
  • - ½ cup golden raisins
  • - ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • - ¼ cup chopped fresh dill
  • - bread (optional)



1- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the pork with the cumin, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook until browned and cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes per side.

2- Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a second large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the onion, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the cabbage, raisins, vinegar, ¼ cup water, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Cook, covered, tossing occasionally, until just tender, 6 to 8 minutes; stir in the dill. Serve with the pork and bread, if using.

Source: realsimple

Add some colour to life- Try this grilled sosatie

 colourful grilled kebab

Sometimes you need some colour in life. The winter can be so gloomy and colourless and that is  why I decided it’s time for a colourful sosatie. 

This is a great recipe and it serves 4 comfortably. 

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Shiraz will definitely complement this meal 

Grilled Lamb Sosatie Recipe 


2 medium green bell peppers, cut into 2cm pieces Salt and pepper 700g boneless lamb leg, trimmed and cut into 2.5 cm cubes 1 medium onion, cut into 2cm pieces 4 slices bacon, each cut into 4 pieces 1/2 cup olive oil 1 small onion, chopped 3 tablespoons lemon juice (juice of 1 large lemon) 2 tablespoons brandy 1 teaspoon tomato sauce 1 clove garlic 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1 teaspoon dried thyme 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper Vegetable oil for brushing the kebabs 

Method In a medium saucepan place peppers in boiling water. Return water to a boil. Remove peppers from water; drain. 

Sprinkle salt and pepper on lamb cubes. On eight 25cm skewers alternately thread meat, pepper, and onion pieces. Thread bacon pieces on both ends of each skewer. Set aside. 

In a blender or food processor purée oil, onion, lemon juice, brandy, tomato sauce, garlic, mustard, oregano, thyme, and cayenne pepper until smooth. 

Lightly oil sosaties and place in center of cooking grate. Grill 7 to 9 minutes for rare (140°F/60°C), 10 to 13 minutes for medium (160°F/71°C), or 14 to 17 minutes for medium-well (170°F/77°C), turning once halfway through grilling time. Brush sosaties with purée occasionally during last half of grilling time. 

Note: If using wooden skewers, soak in water thirty minutes before using so ends won’t burn during grilling time. 


Recipe of the month – Chickpea and cauliflower salad

Robyn MacLarty’s amazing salad recipe got the nod for recipe of the month. She is the our first SA food blogger winner with this stunning dish and post.

This recipe looks so delicious and the way she presents it on her blog ( KOEK! ) makes your mouth water.

Recommended wine: This salad will be perfectly complemented by the Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2010.

Here is Robyn’s recipe:

 Chickpea and cauliflower salad with olive-anchovy dressing

1 head cauliflower, broken into florets Half a loaf of ciabatta (sourdough/bread made with olive oil), crust removed and torn into chunks Extra virgin olive oil, to taste 3 anchovy fillets 1 clove garlic 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed 1 cup black olives, drained and finely chopped Juice and zest of 1 lemon 2 handfuls rocket

1. Lightly steam the cauliflower until just cooked (but still very firm), then plunge into icy water to prevent further cooking. 2. Arrange the bread chunks on a baking tray, drizzle with a little olive oil and season with salt and black pepper. Roast until golden. 3. In a pestle and mortar, mash the anchovy and garlic until you have a paste. Add the lemon juice, zest and a good glug olive oil, and whisk to create a dressing. Season to taste. 4. In a large bowl, combine the cauliflower, chickpeas, olives and dressing, and stir so everything’s nicely coated. 5. Arrange the rocket on a platter and top with the cauliflower and chickpeas. Sprinkle with the croutons, drizzle over any remaining dressing and serve.

Robyn MacLarty:



SA food bloggers promotion


 We are giving away monthly wine prizes to South African food bloggers.

The best recipe or food blog post of the month will win wine prizes from Arniston Bay Wines.

How do you enter?

-          Post the URL  link of your recipe on our Facebook page

-          Use Twitter  – send URL links to @arnistonbay  

-          All entries on South African Food Blogger Showcase’s Facebook group are automatically reviewed

I’ll keep you posted

Killing time on a plane: What to drink with chicken or beef ?

Flyers all over the world have their own way of adding a bit of excitement to an otherwise boring journey. Some people make their in-flight food choice such a big event that they debate their opinions (“Chicken or beef?”) for more than half an hour. Others try to make friends and talk to everyone around them. Not my cup of tea.

I like to read a book and enjoy a wine that complements my chicken of beef. I love to try a new wine or to see what wines the airline has on offer.

I’m not the only one.  I came across the blogpost   of a guy named Terry, who writes about his recent Delta Airlines flight from Seattle and the great wine (Arniston Bay Chardonnay / Chenin Blanc) he had on flight.

Then I followed the link via Linkedin and I ‘know’ what this complete stranger looks like and what his are interests. It appears that we share the same taste in wine and have the same ways of killing time on an plane. The technological era which were are living in is simply amazing!


A funky chicken salad to get you back on track

My busy lifestyle is taking its toll as quick-just-heat-up dinners and take-away lunches is becoming to norm. But luckily I stumbled upon this easy, healthy and quick salad which is the perfect meal to get the balanced lifestyle (diet) back on track, and allow me a few more minutes to relax and kick my feet up.

I treated myself to a lovely glass of Arniston Bay Chardonnay to complete this great meal.

Serves:             4

Total time: 25min



 - 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

  • - 4 teaspoons  salt
  • - 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • - 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 to 3 limes)
  • - 1 tablespoon white wine or rice vinegar
  • - 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • - 4 scallions (white and light green parts), thinly sliced
  • - 2 Granny Smith apples (peeled, if desired), diced
  • - 1/3 cup roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • - 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh mint
  • - 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil




  1. - Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Pound it to an even thinness. Place the chicken in a large saucepan and add enough water to cover by 1 cm. Add 3 teaspoons of the salt and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook until no trace of pink remains, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a bowl of ice water for 5 minutes.
  2. - Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the lime juice, vinegar, and sugar, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Add the scallions and apples and toss.
  3. - Drain the chicken and pat it dry. Dice the chicken and add it to the apple mixture along with the peanuts, mint, basil, and the remaining salt and pepper. Toss and divide among individual plates.



Wine and salad pairing – The tail is wagging the dog


I love wine and salads but sometimes the pairing suggestions are misleading as the salad dressing plays a more important role than the salad.  It seems to me that the tail is wagging the dog when it comes to wine and salad pairing. 

I have come across numerous Salads and salad ingredients wine pairing suggestions but the salad dressing is the ingredient that needs to be paired with the wine. 

But in general salad dressing is one of the most difficult components to coordinate with wine because of its acidic nature.  So what do you do? 

The best thing to do is address the mayor acidity of some dressings. You can reduce the vinegar part of the salad dressing with olive oil our rich stock, like chicken stock. 

 Chef Josh Ash  wrote that a major problem in pairing salad and wine is the high acid level of most vinaigrettes, which wreaks havoc on wine, making it taste flat and flabby.  He suggests that you can avoid this conflict by making dressings that are less sharp but still vivid, with some of the following techniques.

Replace part or all of the red or white wine vinegar in a recipe with balsamic, sherry, or rice wine vinegar, which have fuller, mellower flavours.

Use fruit juice instead of vinegar. Obvious choices might be lemon or lime juice, but think also of orange juice, apple cider, cranberry juice or any fruit juice with a bright flavour.

Replace acid ingredients with other liquids that are intense, but not sharp, such as rich chicken, veal, fish or vegetable stock, Worcester sauce, soy sauce, juices from roasted meats or vegetables or roasted garlic purée. 

When designing a salad, be sure to include ingredients that have a natural affinity to wine like cheese, herbs, greens, nuts, fruits and more. 

My suggestion for middle of the road wine which will pair well with salads is the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc / Chardonnay. This is a lovely versatile crispy and fruity wine.

Spanish Chicken and Rice- The perfect meal for the big match

The World Cup is drawing to a close as Sunday’s final between Spain and Holland will mark the end of this amazing show. It is going to be a titanic battle between these two European super teams. To give the night a Spanish flavour try this interesting and delicious Spanish recipe.

Recipe: Spanish Chicken and Rice

Serves 4

Total time 40 min



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 500g boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 5-6cm pieces
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 cup dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 1 800ml can diced tomatoes, including liquid
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup pimiento-stuffed Spanish olives, chopped (optional)




  1. In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook until golden brown, 2 minutes per side.
  2. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the wine, tomatoes and their liquid, rice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.
  3. Stir in the peas and cook, covered, until heated through, about 2 minutes. Spoon the chicken and rice onto individual plates and sprinkle with the parsley. Serve with the olives, if desired.


Recommended wine

The well balanced Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon  will be the perfect match for this delicious Spanish meal.  


Come and enjoy our wines at the Stellenbosch Wine Festival

The ever popular Stellenbosch Wine Festival has taken a different format this year as festival goers will be visiting the farms. The wines from the company of winepeopleTM have arranged a lovely programme and activities for festival goers.

Bring the family and come and enjoy some of the best wines in one of the most beautiful parts of the county.

Arniston Bay, Kumkani, Versus and Welmoed will the wines that will be showcased at this great festival.

Here are some more details about what we’re planning for the Stellenbosch Wine Festival:

  • - Kiddies corner: Face painting, jumping Castle, colouring in fun
  • - Tickle your tummies: Spitbraai/ potjiekos. The Duck Pond restaurant will be open daily.
  • - Free wine tasting!
  • - Specials on selected wines daily
  • - A complimentary cool de sac with every case of wine purchased, and other POS materials on sale.
  • - Foosball fun
  • - Massages for the ladies
  • - A jazz band
  • - A magician


For more info about the Stellenbosch Wine Festival please visit

An Elizabethan recipe for England’s do-or-die World Cup tie


England is playing Slovenia in a do-or die World Cup tie and all the eyes and hopes will be on the game in Port Elizabeth. I hope England will come out victorious as a number of Brits are here to support their team and experience our lovely country.

England and the English have a vast history with Port Elizabeth and I think the perfect recipe to match with this important match is an old Elizabethan recipe. Elizabethan food is fascinating for its range and breadth as “new foodstuffs” such as the tomato, potato and chives were being introduced from the New World in the late 16th century.

This Elizabethan recipe with its “New World” ingredients will also pair well with exceptional New World wine like the Arniston Bay Shiraz

The use of spices and fruit in savoury recipes during the Elizabethan era was very popular, especially with the upper classes and the Royal court. This is based on a genuine Elizabethan recipe, which have been adapted for modern day cooking.

Recipe: Spiced Elizabethan Pork and Fruit Casserole


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 700 g boned pork leg, cubed
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 300 ml red wine
  • 1 tablespoon british honey
  • 75 g stoned dates, roughly chopped
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 teaspoons freshly chopped herbs (rosemary, parsley & thyme)



Heat the oil and gently fry the onion and garlic for 10 minutes.

Toss the meat in the flour combined with the spices and seasoning and add to the onion.

Fry the meat, stirring occasionally until evenly browned.

Stir in the red wine with the honey and continue to cook over a medium heat, stirring for a further minute.

Add the dates and potato chunks and transfer to an ovenproof casserole dish.

Cover and cook for 2-2 1/2 hours or until the meat is thoroughly cooked.

Just before serving stir in the fresh herbs.


Uruguayan recipe for Bafana’s big game



On Wednesday Bafana Bafana takes on Uruguay in a crucial World Cup match and to get into the global (World Cup) spirit I found this amazing Uruguayan recipe.   

Uruguay shares much of the Argentine tradition of meat and lots of it. Asados of lamb and beef are a staple, and a chivito is a popular steak sandwich

Recipe: Chivito al plato

A chivito al plato would usually have the following ingredients:

1cm thick steak, 2 or 3 slices of bacon, 1 egg, ham, mozzarella cheese, tomato, onion, lettuce, fried potatoes and/or potatoes with carrots and green beans salad, mayonaisse, and salt.

How to prepare a chivito al plato:

Fry the bacon and a few slices of onion. Then, in the same pan and with the bacon grease, cook the steak, adding a bit of salt when is half way done and then also adding the ham and mozzarella cheese on top of it. The mozzarella cheese should melt. Then fry the egg, use a clean pan if necessary.

Then cut the tomato in slices and start preparing the dish in the following way: Start by putting the steak with ham and mozzarella on the dish, then add the bacon, tomato, fried egg, and onion on top of it (the order can vary). Add some more tomato and the lettuce to a side along with the fries and potatoes salad. It can be done only with fries or only with tomatoes as well.

Sometimes chivitos al plato are more basic and only have meat, mozzarella, egg, ham and bacon.

Alternatively you make a chivito al pan which is more or less the same recipe but you put it on a hard bun and eat it like a sandwich

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Cabernet Shiraz will be the perfect match for this (soccer) match and dish.


Our opening game: Mexican dish with South African wine

This weekend the Mexicans will take on South Africa in the opening game of the Soccer World Cup. I think it will be great to make something Mexican this weekend.

This recipe is so easy and delicious and your guests may even do a Mexican wave after this lovely meal

Recommended wine: To make it a South Africa and Mexican affair the Arniston Bay Pinotage will be the perfect South African representative.  


Recipe : Steak With Pepita Sauce and Warm Tortillas

Serves 4

Total Time: 20m


  • - 700g skirt steak
  • - salt and black pepper
  • - 8 15cm flour tortillas
  • - 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
  • - 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • - 1/4 cup pepitas /  pumpkin seed
  • - 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • - 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice




  • Heat broiler. Season the steak with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper and place on a rimmed broilerproof baking sheet. Broil to the desired doneness, 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Let rest at least 5 minutes before slicing.
  • Warm the tortillas according to the package directions.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the onion, cilantro, pepitas, oil, lime juice, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve with the steak and tortillas.



Win Tickets to The Wine Show Jo’burg

Stand a chance to win double tickets to The Wine Show Jo’burg which will be held at The Coca Cola Dome from 4-6 June 2010.

If you want to win the tickets and you’re living area and able to attend, all you have to do is leave a comment on our Facebook page or upload a fan picture.

Alternatively you can Tweet (or ReTweet) anything with the phrase “Arniston Bay” to stand a chance to win tickets.

For more info about the show,  visit

A Meal in 20 minutes: Chicken Cutlets with Tomato Sauté

The pace of life can sometimes be so fast that you just don’t have the time to cook something decent and delicious. Here is a great recipe that is quick, easy and delicious.

Serves: 4

Total Time 20 min


  • 250g small chicken cutlets (8 to 12)
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 250 ml grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 200 ml dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon leaves, chopped




  1. Season the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in 2 batches, cook the chicken until browned and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side; transfer to plates.
  2. Add the tomatoes to the skillet and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until they begin to burst, 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Add the wine and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the scallions and tarragon and serve with the chicken.


 Recommended Wine

 The Arniston Bay Chardonnay will be the perfect match with this dish.

Steak With Potato Salad and Blue Cheese Vinaigrette

Steak is great but sometimes the preparation of the side dishes can sometimes be a “chop till you drop” exercise. If you don’t like chopping, try this “no-knife” recipe. This is an easy and delightful meal.

Serves 4

Total Time: 30m


  • 450 g small potatoes (about 12)
  • salt and black pepper
  • 50ml plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 small steaks (700g in total)
  • 30g  crumbled blue cheese
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 small head lettuce, torn (about 4 cups)


  1. Place the potatoes in a large pot and add enough cold water to cover. Bring to a boil and add 2 teaspoons salt. Reduce heat and simmer until tender, 14 to 16 minutes. Drain, run under cold water to cool, and using a fork or your fingers, break the potatoes in half.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the steaks with 1 teaspoon salt and ¾ teaspoon pepper and cook to the desired doneness, 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium-rare.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the blue cheese, vinegar, the remaining ¼ cup of oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Add the lettuce and potatoes and toss to coat. Serve with the steaks.

Recommended Wine:

The Arniston Bay Cabernet Merlot will be perfect with this meal. This is a well balanced , full bodied wine and will complement this steak dish.


Red wine and fish – Scientists explain the mismatch

Boffins have reported the first scientific elucidation for one of the most widely known rules of thumb for blending wine with food: “Red wine with red meat, white wine with fish.”

Scientists in Japan have claimed that the unpleasant, fishy aftertaste noticeable when consuming red wine with fish results from naturally occurring iron in red wine.

Takayuki Tamura and colleagues note that wine connoisseurs established the rule of thumb because of the flavour clash between red wine and fish. They point out, however, that there are exceptions to the rule, with some red wines actually going well with seafood. Until now, nobody could consistently predict which wines might trigger a fishy aftertaste because of the lack of knowledge about its cause.

The scientists asked wine tasters to sample 38 red wines and 26 white wines while dining on scallops. Some of the wines contained small amounts of iron, which varied by country of origin, variety, and vintage.

They found that wines with high amounts of iron had a more intensely fishy aftertaste. This fishy taste diminished, on the other hand, when the researchers added a substance that binds up iron.

The findings indicate that iron is the key factor in the fishy aftertaste of wine-seafood pairings, the researchers say, suggesting that low-iron red wines might be a good match with seafood.


Arniston Bay Brand News

White wines and fish are generally a great pairing and if you serve the fish with a creamy source , I would recommend the Arniston Bay Chardonnay . This is a stunning, versatile and well balanced wine.

Recipe: Rump of beef cooked slowly in red wine

I stumbled across this recipe and it is a true winner – not only does it taste great, it’s also very easy to prepare. After you’ve the smallest amount of work, the dish practically takes care of itself so it’s ideal when you don’t have time to slave away in front of the stove yet still want to impress guests.


1.5kg  rump of beef, trimmed of its fat Sea salt and black pepper 50ml olive oil 2 yellow onions, peeled and chopped 4 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped 4 celery sticks, trimmed and chopped 4-6 fresh bay leaves 1 small bunch of thyme 1 small bunch of rosemary 8 cloves of garlic, peeled and lightly crushed 750ml good-quality red wine 1 litre chicken stock


Start by seasoning the meat generously all over, then form it into a roll and tie with string. Heat the olive oil over a medium heat in a heavy-based saucepan large enough to easily hold the meat. When the oil is hot, add the meat and brown really well all over, this will take about 10 minutes. Lift out and set aside on a plate.

Next add the vegetables to the same pan along with the herbs and garlic, and turn the heat down to low. Cook the vegetables, stirring every now and then, for 15 minutes or until they have softened and are sweet to the taste.

At this point return the meat to the saucepan. Pour over the wine, followed by the stock. Place the lid on the pan and turn the heat down to its lowest possible setting and leave, if you can, for five hours.

Next, take out the meat and bay leaves then strain the sauce through a colander, pressing firmly with the back of a ladle to pass the vegetables through. This will serve to thicken the sauce. Return the meat and bay leaves to the pan and pour over the strained sauce. Turn off the heat and allow to cool. Before serving, reheat the meat gently, it should by now be falling apart and so soft that it can be eaten with a spoon.

Serve in warm bowls accompanied by whatever you fancy; buttermilk mashed potatoes, crusty bread or just a simple salad and a glass of really good red wine.

I served this dish with a bottle of Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2008. This wine has deep red colour with fresh redcurrant and berry fruit aromas with hints of nutmeg and mint.

Source: The Independent

The best way to remove red wine stains

It’s happened to you and it’s happened to me… why does there always seem to be a white shirt, carpet or couch involved? Yes, I’m talking about the dreaded red wine stain.

So what exactly is the best way to remove a red wine stain? When push comes to shove, everyone seems to have a different remedy and no one seems to know whether their remedy actually works! Well, I have decided to give some of the popular “quick fixes” (and some unusual ones) a try, to see which works the best.

My testing procedure began by pouring some red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon to be exact) on white fabric and then applying each remedy immediately. I also tried each remedy after a few hours, once the stain had dried. Here are the results, in no particular order (see “after” pictures of the fresh stains below):

Water: This seemed to fade the “fresh” stain only slightly more than the “old” stain, with both leaving a very noticeable mark on the fabric. Score: Fresh stain: 6/10; Old stain: 4/10 White wine: I found that the white wine didn’t work much better than the water, in fact the water did a better job with the “old” stain. So, instead of wasting your white wine, rather use water to treat a red wine stain. Score: Fresh stain: 6/10; Old stain: 2/10

Salt: Salt didn’t make much of a difference to either of the two stains (fresh and old). In fact, it just made more of a mess than any of the other methods tested. Score: Fresh stain: 2/10; Old stain: 1/10

Milk: Being white and packed with goodness, I thought milk would do the trick, but yet again I was disappointed. The milk faded the fresh stain a fair amount, but hardly made any difference to the old stain. Score: Fresh stain: 6/10; Old stain: 1/10 Cleen Green: This common cleaning agent worked wonders, removing the fresh stain COMPLETELY in no time. The old stain however turned to an ugly green/grey colour after being treated with the Cleen Green. Score: Fresh stain: 10/10; Old stain: 1/10

Hydrogen Peroxide: This might just be the answer to the world’s red wine stain problems… Mix equal parts of Hydrogen Peroxide (available from any chemist) and dish washing liquid. After a few seconds of rubbing.voila.fresh stain GONE! The old stain required a bit more elbow grease, but in the end it was reduced by approximately 80%. However, as this is a bleaching agent I would not recommend using it on coloured fabrics or carpets! Score: Fresh stain: 10/10; Old stain: 8/10

Source: SA Wine Advocate

Perfectly paired wines for Easter

The traditional dinners that many people prepare for their Easter holiday meal consist of either roasted lamb or baked ham. The tradition of roast lamb actually dates back to biblical times, to a meal that was commonly referred to as the “sacrificial lamb,” while the baked ham is an American tradition that began more out of necessity than for any other reason.

Prior to refrigeration, hogs were slaughtered in the fall and what wasn’t eaten immediately was cured and smoked to last through the springtime. These two main courses are on the opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to pairing wines.

The perfect pairing for a Smoked Ham (or gammon) will depend on the sauce or preparation method. But in general the saltiness of the pork will probably lend itself to fruitier wines like the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay. This wine has pineapple and melon flavours on the nose with a full fresh and crispy finish.

Roasted lamb offers a much wider variety of wine from which one can choose, including Bordeaux style , Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and  Malbec to name a few. I think the Arniston Bay Cabernet Merlot will go perfect with a roasted lamb.

Read more on :

How to Make an Educated Guess When Ordering Wine

No matter how versed you are in the world of wine there will always be labels and brands that you’ve never tried, but when faced with ordering from a list of wines that you’ve never heard of it is possible to make a more educated selection than simply reading what the menu says and then choosing between a cabernet or a merlot. The key is in knowing where the wine was made.

#1 Hot vs Cool Climate Grapes grown in warmer climates tend to be lower in acidity and higher in sugar, which results in fuller-bodied wine. Cooler climates more often yield the opposite with grapes having higher acidity and less sugar, so the end product is lighter-bodied. This climate rule can be derailed, however, by local variances like a south facing vineyard that’s warmer than average for the surrounding area, or by certain breeds of grape (some are consistently flavored no matter where they’re grown).

#2 Old World vs New World Another good rule of thumb is that generally speaking traditional Old World (European) wines tend to the earthier, spicier side while New World (United States, Argentina, South Africa, anywhere not Europe) varieties are fruitier. Again, this rule does not always apply as the occasional New World winemaker may aspire to Old World techniques, or a European might deliberately create a fruit-forward variety to tap into that market.

So in applying these two rules you could make an educated guess that a cabernet from South Africa is probably fuller bodied than a cabernet from Yarra Valley in Australia, but that neither are likely to be as earthy as a cabernet listed from France.


Arniston Bay Brand News

A great example of a full bodied South African Cabernet is the Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2008. This wine has fresh redcurrant and berry fruit aromas with hints of nutmeg and mint.

Fruits for thought at the first SA Food Bloggers Conference

The first SA Food bloggers conference was a wonderful day and will definitely become an annual event.

South African Food bloggers came together at the Cook’s Playground in Cape Town and it was amazing to meet (in person) some of the legends of SA food Blogging.

It was incredible to have online food personalities like  Browniegirl , Jeanne (the Cooksister) and Jenny (Giggling Gourmet ) under one roof at the same event.

The speakers gave very interesting views and tips and this all was fruits for thoughts.

Arniston Bay was proud to be a co-sponsor of this event and we truly hope that this event will become an annual highlight for SA food bloggers.

Read more…

Photos of this event visit can be seen here

Bubbles and fire

You’ve just swallowed a delicious bite of a fiery vindaloo, or maybe a five-pepper Thai curry, Jamaican jerk chicken, or something spicy from Sichuan. Your cheeks are red, drops of sweat are breaking out on your brow, and your mouth tingles with a tasty fire.

Now, what to drink?

Actually, if you’re seeking to extinguish the fire, dairy works best. Indian yogurt lassi, Thai iced tea and Vietnamese coffee with a dollop of condensed milk all probably evolved to meet this need. But who wants a glass of Grade A when there’s wine or beer to be had?

Beer, indeed, is a viable option, with its relatively low alcohol to allow for quaffing in quenching gulps, and its bubbly carbonation to scrub one’s taste buds clean.

Wine poses a problem, at least in my culinary universe, because its relatively high alcohol levels make it less than prudent to gulp it in quantity. Worse, you’re literally pouring alcohol on a burn, and that hurts.

If wine’s your choice, look for relatively low-alcohol items, ideally with a bit of residual sweetness (many Rieslings and some Chenin Blancs fill this bill); or crisp, bubbly carbonation that offers some of the same “palate-scrubbing” effect as a beer.

One such a Bubbly that can do wonders for a mouth on fire is  the Arniston Bay Charmat Rose sparkling wine.  This Charmat Rose wine offers a beautifully delicate ensemble of forest berry rose petal violets white cherry and peach aromas on the nose with zesty tropical fruit flavours and fresh crisp bubbles on the finish and palate.


Arniston Bay Sponsors first SA Food Bloggers Conference

In the past, people relied mainly on traditional media to gain access to a vast array of topics. The worldwide blogosphere has revolutionised the way we communicate and has opened up channels for debate, news, entertainment and general socialising. Blogs offer a more personal communication and interaction with the blog (information portal) and its consumer.

Arniston Bay wines will be sponsoring this event and will afford food bloggers the opportunity to taste the wines and best decide which of the wines to pair their foods with.

the company of wine people™’s Executive Director of Sales and Marketing, Chris O’Shea, says, “We are proud to be sponsoring our easy-drinking, lifestyle wine for this occasion. It aligns perfectly with our brand essence.”

Guests attending the food bloggers conference will have the opportunity to sample relaxation at its best with the Arniston Bay varietals such as the Sparkling Rosé, Charmat, Chenin Blanc Chardonnay, Cabernet Merlot, Shiraz Pinotage and the Pinotage Rosé.

“We are very excited to introduce the full range of Arniston Bay wines to the food bloggers and are hoping that the success of the conference will be extended to Johannesburg and Cape Town, although cyber space may have no limits having an actual event for the bloggers to attend is a great way for them to extend their knowledge and get to meet their fellow bloggers.”

South Africa has seen a remarkable usage increase in the local blogosphere, with the number of active blogs increasing from 600 in December 2006 to 3789 a year later in December 2007. These statistics are a result of a 2008/2009 survey of Online Media in South Africa, conducted by media researcher and commentator, Arthur Goldstuck of World Wide Worx and the Online Publishers Association.

With South African Internet services set to expand, consumers are set to have more connectivity choice than ever before. South Africa’s Internet population is expected to grow as much in the next five years as it has in the 15 years since the Internet became commercially available in South Africa, according to the latest World Wide Worx Internet Access in South Africa 2008 report.

The increased growth rate is expected to continue for the next five years, taking the Internet user population to the 9-million mark by 2014.

These statistics will have a direct effect on how prevalent blogging is in South Africa and how it will continue to grow year-on-year, Food24 is SA’s biggest online food community and will be using this conference as an opportunity to meet their sometimes anonymous members and offer advice on how to make a blog successful.

The first food bloggers conference will be taking place on Sunday 21 March in Cape Town at the Giggling Gourmet’s Cooks Playground.

The conference will include talks by guest speakers such as; award-winning blogger Jeanne Horak-Druiff, the talented food styler Nina Timm, Editor-in-chief of Women24, Food24 and Parent24 Sam Wilson and professional book editor and author of the blog Scruptuous SA Jane-Anne Hobbs.

Tickets to the conference are R430 per person, visit: for more information.

Restaurant wine ordering no-no’s

Ordering wine at a restaurant can sometimes be an awkward situation. I have found that knowing the no-no’s you are better equipped to make the order ordeal less awkward.

American wine and food writer Bill Daily agrees and he believes that ordering wine in a restaurant always seems fraught with danger: Did I order the “right” wine? Did I spend too much? Did I look like an idiot in front of my server? More important, did I look like an idiot in front of my partner/significant other/prospective hot number?

Here’s a very idiosyncratic list of personal pet peeves and observations from the team here at The Stew. Please feel free to add your own comments or pointers.

1. Do not ignore your server or wine steward when ordering wine. Ask for recommendations that will match with your food and your budget. 2. Do not be shy about price. If you don’t want to say your price range out loud, point to a wine and ask for something similar. The server will get the signal. 3. Do not order more than one  wine by the glass, especially glasses of cheap brands. Wine markups are high at restaurants; you get more bang for your buck by ordering a bottle. Even a half-bottle (two together cost more than the whole) gives you more for less than by-the-glass. 4. Do not buy the most expensive wine on the wine list because you think it’s the best. 5. Speaking of price, do not sit there clueless about how much wines really cost. Try to walk in with a ballpark idea of how much some wines cost retail (even more eye-opening is comparing the wholesale price to the list price). Then see how much the restaurant has jacked the price up. 6. Do not merely glance at the bottle when it’s presented. Look closely at the label. Is it what you ordered? Sounds obvious but some wineries release wines in lines of varying quality. You want what you ordered. Also, check for correct vintage; not so important with wine from stable climates like California but vital for places such as Bordeaux or Burgundy where weather can have a big impact. 7. Do not be afraid to send a wine back if it tastes or smells bad. 8. Do not back down if the waiter or sommelier insists the returned wine is good. They’ll sell it by the glass at the bar. Still, if you send a wine back because you don’t like the taste of it and the wine is pricey, expect some resistance if you try to order an identical bottle. Chances are you ain’t going to like it. 9. Do not sniff the pulled cork. Glance at it in the case of older wines for possible signs of leakage or damage that could affect quality. 10. Do not swirl the poured wine in the glass longer than five seconds. After that you’re just playing with it.

Arniston Bay Brand News

For a fail-safe white wine, opt for the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay. This wine is perennially popular, especially in the UK market, and will complement a diverse variety of dishes, and the easy-drinking wine style is enjoyed by most white wine lovers.

Men and women prefer to receive wine from their Valentine


Forget the candy and the flowers! If you really want to win over your sweetheart, give your Valentine a bottle of wine. Even Cupid knows that wine is the perfect sharing beverage.

According to a recent Online Survey in which both men and women participated equally, 59% said they would be happier to receive wine from their sweetheart on Valentine’s Day compared with 41% who would prefer a box of chocolates.

And what do most people think they will actually receive from their Valentine? Though 59% of those surveyed said they would prefer wine over candy for Valentine’s Day, only 14% expected that their sweetheart would really come through with a bottle of wine. Almost 50% expected to receive one of the old standbys–flowers (26%) or candy (23%). Another 21% didn’t even expect a token gift.

Read more …

So surprise and dazzle your Valentine with a good bottle of wine. The Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 with its deep red colour and berry fruit aromas is just the right wine for your Valentine.


Chicken and Noodle Salad With Chili Dressing


Chicken salads are easy meal options, especially in summer. Here’s a simple recipe which is delicious when shared with friends and served with Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay.

Total Time:      25 minutes

Serves:             4


  • -250g  rice noodles or angel hair pasta
  • -1 tablespoon olive oil
  • -4 180g  boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • -1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • -1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • -1 tablespoon sugar
  • -1 jalapeno (preferably red), seeded and thinly sliced
  • -1 bunch watercress (about 3 cups)
  • -1 seedless cucumber, cut into ½ cm-thick half-moons
  • -2 scallions, sliced


  1. - Cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water.
  2. - Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook until browned and cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes per side.
  3. - In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, sesame oil, sugar, and jalapeño.
  4. - Slice the chicken. Divide the noodles, chicken, watercress, cucumber, and scallions among plates. Drizzle with the dressing.

Recommended Wine:

The Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay 2009 will superbly  complement this meal. This wine has a lovely pineapple and melon nose with a crisp and fresh taste.

Source: Real Simple

The wine:


Smoked salmon salad with rye


While salads are perennially popular, in the scorching summer months they are the ideal choice for meals.

Not only is the cool crispness appreciated on a hot day but also the fact that the kitchen and the cook can stay cool as very little cooking is required for the salad.

This smoked salmon salad with rye recipe  is a perfect summer salad and great for a picnic or lunch dish.

The mayonnaise binds all the ingredients together, and it can be eaten with a fork or piled on to the bread and eaten as an open sandwich. This smoked salmon salad is quite thick with mayonnaise, making it suitable to pile on to sliced ryebread or crispbread. I like to use hot-smoked salmon but you can also use cold-smoked salmon.

Serves 4.


· 350g hot smoked salmon, flaked

. 1 punnet baby plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise

· 1/2 cup mayonnaise

· 1 tbsp mild mustard

· 1 tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice

· 1 cup baby butter leaves

· 1 cup curly endive, roughly chopped (spinach can be an alternative)

· 1/2 bunch chives, chopped

· 2 hardboiled eggs, chopped

.  freshly ground black pepper


Combine the salad leaves and tomatoes, then fold through the smoked salmon.

Mix the mayonnaise with the mustard, lemon juice and pepper. Fold the mayonnaise through the salad.

Sprinkle the chopped egg and chives over the top of the salad.

Accompany the salad with some rye bread.

Recommended wine

The Arniston Bay The Shore Rosé 2009 will complement this dish. This is an uncomplicated easy drinking Rosé filled with sweet red berry and strawberry aromas.


Which wine for the summer braai?


Braai (or BBQ) is a big part of the South African summer and various social events and gatherings consists of a braai.

But what is the right sort of wine to offer at a braai? Let’s get one thing straight: there isn’t a right sort! The wine you choose for your braai should be one that you enjoy drinking, not necessarily one that you think you should enjoy. Set the tone for a light-hearted and relaxed event.

Rosé So if you love a glass of rosé on a summer’s evening, welcome your guests with a chilled dry rosé, which combines the crispness of white wine with the flavours of strawberry or watermelon.

Sparkling wine

Or greet them with a glass of fizzy Sparkling wine. Chilled, pink maybe, it’ll add a touch of sophisticated fun to any garden gathering.

Bearing in mind that both white and red wines can be light-, medium- or full-bodied, vegetables, white meat and fish are light in character and respond best to a sympathetic wine, while red meats can handle a more robust accompaniment.

We’ll make some suggestions but remember, it’s your party and you’re supposed to enjoy it too, so choose what you’re happy with.

Most red wines

Will go well with simple barbecued (braai-ed)  meats. Try a young Cabernet Sauvignon or light fruity French wine.

Sauvignon Blanc

A bottle of Sauvignon Blanc or another white wine with a high acidity content will go well with plain braai-ed meat. Look for one that promises a crisp and intensely aromatic experience.

Or saucy?

For meat covered in barbecue sauce, you want a wine that won’t try to compete with the flavour but will complement it. A young fruity, spicy red would be ideal. Try a Shiraz or a more traditional French Cotes du Rhone, which sometimes has a smoky aroma of its own.


If you notice that you’re running out of chilled wine, pop a bottle or two in the freezer for half an hour. Take them out and keep them in a bucket of cold water and some ice. Use cooler sleeves that are available at most off-licences.

To keep a large number of bottles cool, three-quarter fill a clean dustbin with cold water and ice. Place the bottles in a bin bag and put the secured bin bag in the bucket.


Arniston Bay Brand News:

A perfect example of a great young Cabernet Sauvignon is  the Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 . This wine has berry fruit aromas with hints of mint and nutmeg.


Another wine that goes well with a braai is the Arniston Bay Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2009.This wine has cut grass and green pea aromas with a crisp acidity and a good length.


Steak With Spinach Couscous


Steak is such a versatile dish and it can be prepared in numerous and interesting ways. This is a nice and easy and very delicious recipe. Ideal for the holidays

Serves:                         4

Total Time:                 20 minutes


  • - 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • - 700g sirloin steak
  • - salt and black pepper
  • - 1- 300g box couscous
  • - 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • - 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • - 2 cups baby spinach
  • - 1/4 cup crumbled Feta
  • - 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


  1. - Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the steak with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook to the desired doneness, 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Let rest before slicing.
  2. - Cook the couscous according to the package directions; transfer to a large bowl.
  3. - Wipe out the skillet. Cook the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, the garlic, and pine nuts over medium heat, stirring, until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Fold into the couscous with the spinach, Feta, lemon juice, and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve with the steak.

Recommended wine

The Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 will complement this dish. This wine has a deep red colour with redcurrant and berry aromas and goes perfectly with steak.

The Wine:


Source: realsimple

Drinking and Driving over the Festive Season?


Drinking and Driving over the Festive Season? Then it’s time to ask Goodfellas to the party.

Cathy Marston writes  “Sadly, I realise that this is not the norm here in SA. The drink-driving stats in this country are horrendous with alcohol being blamed for 50% of the 18,000 deaths on our roads every year – yes, that number is correct – 18,000 deaths a year. A massive sea-change is needed in people’s attitudes to drinking and driving, and one company which is providing a real alternative to this is Goodfellas. They offer a membership service which you can call after one too many drinks and they will come to wherever you are and drive you safely home in your own car.”

According to Alison Brussow, marketing manager for Goodfellas, all the drivers have to pass stringent background checks, driving tests on both manual and automatic cars and undergo regular training by the company. Both Morell and Mogamat had branded uniforms and ID cards and we were given their names by the call centre when we rang to book the service so there was no possibility of any mistakes. And we felt completely safe in their hands – much more so than when we pick up a random taxi from the rank, something which is an added boon for women going home on their own as well.

Drinking and driving is a complete social no-no in the UK – if ever I contemplated getting behind the wheel after a few drinks, then the thought of my friends’ total disgust and disapproval is always enough to change my mind. I have heard various excuses over the years such as “Well, we have to drink and drive in SA because we have no public transport!” or “I’m a really good driver so alcohol doesn’t affect me like other people” and really folks, enough is enough. The choices are simple -

  • – Drink, but don’t drive
  • – Drive, but don’t drink
  • – Call Goodfellas or somebody like them.

and with the Festive season in full swing, there are plenty of opportunities to use a service like this and I fully intend to do so. After all, if it’s good enough for the Sharks, for South African Breweries and for Bob Skinstad, then it’s good enough for me too.” Tel:   0861 433 552

Source: food24


Arniston Bay Brand News

Arniston Bay supports this initiative and urges consumers to make use of this service.

Roasted Pork With Brussels Sprouts and Apricots


Pork is a very versatile and sometimes overlooked meat. It can be used in a wide array of dishes suitable for any season and taste. Here is a nice, easy and delicious recipe to treat your guests or family.

Serves:             4

Total Time:     25 minutes


  • - 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • - 1 pork tenderloin (500g)
  • - salt and black pepper
  • - 350g Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced
  • - 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • - 2 tablespoons roasted unsalted almonds, chopped


  1. - Heat oven to 200º C. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Season the pork with 1⁄2 teaspoon salt and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper and cook, turning occasionally, until browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the skillet to oven and roast until the pork is cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Let rest before slicing.
  2. - Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a second large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the Brussels sprouts, apricots, almonds, 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper and cook, tossing, until the Brussels sprouts are just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Serve with the pork.

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé will complement this dish. This is a light , fresh and fruity easy drinking wine which is perfect for this meal.

The wine:



Finding the midway in wine pairing


Wine and food pairing has some semi-rigid guidelines and some aspects that is guided by individual preferences. It can be difficult to find a balance between the different pairing approaches but at the end of the day it must work for you.

The old rule of “White wine with white meat and red wine with red meat” can be such a  rigid way of pairing wine and food. The problem is that you only pair the wine with the meat and not with the sauce. The sauce must be taken into account when pairings are done because that is the main taste catalyst of the dish.

A steak with a garlic butter sauce can be complemented by a buttery Chardonnay. And spicy fish dishes can be complemented by peppery Shiraz wines.

On the other hand, food and wine connoisseurs sometimes goes a bit over the top when trying to pair wine with the slightest aspect of one of the ingredients. Like pairing wine with the sort of salt or a minor spice ingredient.

Another thing is;  Where does Rosé wines fit into the old “White with white and Red with red” rule?  Does this mean you only drink Rosé wine with well done steaks or with “pink” fish like salmon? No of course not. Rosé wines are fantastic food partners with lighter examples matching salads, chicken dishes and fish with denser, darker versions standing up to steak and game.

Do not over analyse and remember just enjoy whatever you end up eating and drinking – it’s not an ordeal, it’s an experience.

Arniston Bay Brand News:

The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé is an excellent and versatile wine. This wine has strawberry and violet aromas and a fresh fruity taste. This wine will complement many salads, sandwiches and even steaks.

The wine:


Source: food24

Lamb and Vegetable Stew


There is a common misconception that stews are difficult to prepare and extremely time consuming. Here is a quick and delicious recipe for a Lamb stew.

Serves:             4

Total Time:     30 min


  • - 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • - 750g lamb steaks (top round or shoulder), bones removed and meat cut into 5cm pieces
  • - salt and black pepper
  • - 4 carrots,
  • - 1 onion, sliced
  • - 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • - 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • - 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • - 1 400g can diced tomatoes, drained
  • - 100g green beans, cut into small pieces (about 1 cup)
  • - 1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped


  1. - Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Season the lamb with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook, turning occasionally, until medium-rare, 6 to 8 minutes; transfer to a plate.
  2. - Add the carrots, onion, and the remaining oil to the pot. Cook until beginning to soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the flour and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine and scrape up any brown bits.
  3. - Add the broth, tomatoes, and beans. Simmer until the vegetables are tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the lamb, parsley, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Serve immediately.

Recommended wine. The Arniston Bay Merlot 2008 will complement this dish. This wine is a food-friendly red with a good structure and clean execution.

The wine:


Source: realsimple

Learn from the Grape Mistakes


Pairing wine and food is in many cases an individual perception. But there are guidelines which suggest the most popular pairings and then there are commonly excepted pairings which are deemed to be universal mismatches.

To make sense of the best wine pairings, it helps to recognize the worst wine pairings. This gives and indication of which tastes complement and which tastes clash with one another.

Champagne / Sparkling Wine

Bubbles wake up the taste buds and Sparkling wines are eminently food-friendly.

Worst Pairing:

A frequent wine-pairing mistake: cake and bubbly. The Champagne is relatively tart, the cake is super-sweet, and it’s like World War III in your mouth.

Great pairing:

Great with Saltimbocca Veal or Oysters

Cabernet Sauvignon

Big Cabs are the giants of the wine world: Be careful, or they will stomp all over your menu.

Worst pairing:

Filet of sole or any white flaky fish, is delicate, and the big wine will overshadow the taste and can actually sour the taste.

Great pairing:

Red wine and beef is a classic match, but the addition of soy sauce, which helps soften tannins, makes the match that much better

Sauvignon Blanc

These wines tend to have fruity, citrus and grassy aromas with crispy and fresh finishes.

Worst pairing:

Brussels sprout and Blue cheese. Blue cheese does not complement this wine style and the taste of Brussels sprouts tends to become sour with some Sauvignon Blancs.

Great pairing: Sole (or a white flaky fish) with a Lemon and herb sauce. The wine and the sauce has a complimentary similarity which is divine.

Arniston Bay Brand News

We would suggest the Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 with rump steak and red wine sauce. The Veal Saltimbocca with Arniston Bay Sparkling Wine will be great and the Arniston Bay Reserve Sauvignon Blanc will be great with lemon and herb  sole.

The Wine: Arniston Bay Reserve Sauvignon Blanc



Big Spicy Meatballs


Finding new ways to improve on old recipes / dish is always exciting. Meatballs are a standard dish and everyone has a good-to recipe for this good-old-faithful meal. Here is interesting spicy meatball dish which will not fail to delight your guests.

Recommended wine: Arniston Bay Shiraz 2008. This is a full bodied wine with intense dark colour subtle smoky and pepper spice nose with strong full middle palate and good tannin structure. Good finish with hints of coffee and chocolate in the aftertaste.

The Recipe

Serves 8

Total preparation time is about  1 hour


  • -500g lean ground beef
  • -500g  ground pork
  • -1 medium onion, minced
  • -2 slices soft bread, crusts removed and torn into pieces
  • -5 cloves garlic, minced
  • -2 eggs
  • -1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • -1/4 cup olive oil
  • -1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • -1 tablespoon salt
  • -1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan
  • -3 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • -1 1/2 cups ricotta


  1. -Preheat oven to 200° C. In a large bowl, combine the first 10 ingredients, 1 cup of the Parmesan, and 2 teaspoons of the pepper. Mix just to combine. Shape the mixture into 16 to 18 large meatballs (each should consist of about 3/4 cup of meat). Place on a baking pan and set aside.
  2. -In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta with the remaining Parmesan and the remaining pepper; set aside.
  3. -Bake the meatballs for 20 minutes in upper third of oven. Remove from oven and turn on broiler. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the ricotta mixture onto each meatball. Broil 3 to 5 minutes or until the ricotta just starts to brown.

The Wine:



Sparkling wine can light up the night


Apart from the lovely drink, serving Champaign (sparkling wine) can be a mood and ambiance setter. Serve it ice cold and to open the bottle gracefully.

The next important step in sparkling wine etiquette is how to get sparkling wine into a glass. A lot trickier than it seems. Here are three clever tips to pouring a perfect glass of bubbly every time:

  • -Easy does it. Pour a smidgen of the wine into the bottom of the glass first, wait for the initial fizzy head to bubble down, and then pour the rest.
  • -Don’t tilt the glass. Rather, hold it upright, or let it stand on a table and pour the wine directly into it. The swirl and turbulence of a tilted glass can cause the wine to bubble up and over.
  • -Don’t over-fill the glass. It’s a sure way to send all that precious liquid cascading over the edges of the glass. Think ‘less is more’ when filling a glass with wine. And with a bottle of bubbly, it’s always better to go back for a refill from a chilled bottle than to sit with the wine getting warm in your glass.

Sparkling wine offers a great way to punctuate a celebration with a special toast and with a bit of etiquette, it can turn a special occasion into that memorable event.

Arniston Bay Brand News:

The Arniston Bay Charmat Brut is a lovely elegant and zesty wine with tropical fruit flavours and fresh crisp bubbles. This wine can turn a special occasion into a memorable event.

The Wine:



What restaurateurs can do in trying economic times


Wine sales at restaurants and bars are declining as diners trade down to less expensive options or skip wine altogether to save a buck.

The economic woes have in some cases influenced diners to be less extravagant and less experimental. Diners can’t afford to be wrong and thus they are not likely to try new restaurants or try new more expensive wines.

It seems that diners will rather go to their tried and trusted restaurant and will order the wines they know but will scale down to order a more value-based wine (not as expensive) on the menu.

Although the economic woes can be devastating for restaurants businesses, some opportunities have arisen.

Firstly, treat your regulars better and to get to know them well.

Secondly, go with flow and have a more value based wines on the menu.

Lastly encourage personal references from your current client base, because a new client in these times is more valuable and sustainable than a new client in the old (pre-credit crunch)  times.

Arniston Bay Brand News

The Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay is one of the best value for money wines available. This wine is doing extremely well in the UK market and wine critics have given these wine great revues.

Spiced Pork Chops With Red Cabbage and Raisins


Pork chops is probably one of the most underrated dishes. It is easy to prepare and it is very versatile. This recipe is and nice and easy recipe for a spicy pork chops with some cabbage and raisins. Truly divine.

Recommended wine: I would serve the Arniston Bay Shiraz 2008. This is a full bodied wine with intense dark colour subtle smoky and pepper spice nose with strong full middle palate and good tannin structure. Good finish with hints of coffee and chocolate in the aftertaste

Serves 4

Total Time: 25min


  • - 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • - 4 bone-in pork rib chops (about 2.5cm thick; 500g total)
  • - 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • - salt and black pepper
  • - 1 onion, sliced
  • - ½ small head red cabbage, thinly sliced (about 6 cups)
  • - ½ cup golden raisins
  • - ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • - ¼ cup chopped fresh dill
  • - bread (optional)


  1. - Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the pork with the cumin, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook until browned and cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes per side.
  2. - Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a second large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the onion, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the cabbage, raisins, vinegar, ¼ cup water, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Cook, covered, tossing occasionally, until just tender, 6 to 8 minutes; stir in the dill. Serve with the pork and bread, if using.

Source: realsimple

The Wine:


Leftover wine enhances flavours

Cooking with Wine

If the dregs of a nearly empty bottle of wine have been kicking around your kitchen a little too long, chances are it will be better appreciated in a dish rather than a glass.

That’s because whether red or white, extra wine that’s past its prime still can have life as a great flavour enhancer.

“That leftover bit of wine has more potential to add flavour to your cooking than you realized,” says Food Network host Alex Guarnaschelli. Whether a chardonnay or a pinot, wine enhances flavours and brings its own zing to sauces, marinades and desserts.

Onions, for example, can be caramelized in a bit of butter, red wine, salt and pepper, then used as a topping for pizza, in a grinder with sausage and peppers, or on panini with gruyere cheese.

Once you’ve made sure that the wine isn’t so old it’s turned to vinegar, there are few rules to cooking with wine, except to use one you actually would drink.

I can add that Arniston Bay Wine pouches lasts up to a month in the pouch once opened which implies that this delicious wine can be used for drinking and cooking for a long time.

Here are some favourite recipes for that leftover glass of wine:

  • -Toss pasta with grated Parmesan cheese, butter and fresh herbs, then add a splash of white wine. The wine will give a pleasant acidity to balance the other flavours. Enjoy this meal with a Arniston Bay Reserve Sauvignon Blanc.
  • -Make a reduced-wine vinaigrette to serve over grilled meat or fish. Bring red or white wine to a gentle simmer, then add a pinch of sugar or honey and reduce by half. Transfer the wine to a medium bowl. Add a handful of sliced seedless grapes, a pinch of salt and a generous splash of olive oil. Stir to blend, crushing some of the grapes as you mix.
  • -Braise vegetables in it. We recommends carrots, parsnips and turnips. Peel the vegetables, toss in a bowl with a bit of brown sugar, salt and pepper. Add a splash of white wine and a little olive oil, then toss to coat. Arrange them on a single layer on a baking sheet and cook, at 180 degrees Celsius, until they are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife.
  • -When steaming clams or mussels, pour some wine into the pot along with peeled shallots. Stir to blend, then let the wine reduce and meld with the juices of the shellfish. Add some fresh basil leaves and a little butter. I’ll recommend to serve this dish with the ever popular Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc / Chardonnay.
  • -After blackening fish with spices — such as cayenne pepper, paprika and ground cumin — transfer the fish to a platter and gently add wine to the pan used to cook the fish. Return the pan to the heat and allow the wine to reduce. Add a few capers, a squeeze of lemon juice and a touch of smooth mustard. Stir it all up and then pour the sauce over the fish.


Chicken and sweet potatoes – An easy, delicious meal


Old trusted chicken recipes are sometimes overlooked. This simple and easy to prepare chicken and sweet potato recipe is an excellent meal for friends or family. This easy dish will enable you to join guests in the pre-meal conversations as the preparations are not too time consuming.

I recommend a  wooded Chardonnay (such as the Arniston Bay Reserve Chardonnay 2007) to enjoy with this meal. Pronounced fresh citrusy nose with nice mineral notes on the palate. Oak gentle and well integrated and the wine really complements this meal.


Serves 4

Hands-On Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour


  • 2 small sweet potatoes (about 500g), peeled and cut into thin wedges
  • 1 red onion, cut into wedges
  • 12 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 1.5 – 1.8 kg chicken, cut into 10 pieces


Heat oven to 200º C. In a large roasting pan, toss the potatoes, onion, thyme, oil, 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper.

Season the chicken with 1⁄2 teaspoon salt and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper and nestle it, skin-side up, among the potatoes and onions.

Roast until the chicken is cooked through and the potatoes are tender, 40 to 50 minutes.


The wine


The tail-end of the winter recipes: Oxtail and Mashed Potatoes


It may officially be spring, but there’s no denying the nip that’s still lingering in the air. So, before we go full steam in summer, there’s still some time to sample some winter comfort food such as traditional oxtail with mash. Complement the meal with a bottle of good quality red wine.

I paired my meal with a Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2006 – the full bodied wine complements the dish and the hints of vanilla and chocolate is divine with the oxtail .

Ingredients OXTAIL

cake flour seasoned with salt and pepper 2 kg oxtail, cut into pieces at the joints 25 ml sunflower oil 3 onions, halved and sliced 20 ml chopped garlic 2 x 410 g cans whole peeled tomatoes 50 g tomato paste 500 ml dry white wine 125 ml port freshly chopped herbs to taste MASHED POTATOES 800 g potatoes, peeled and cubed 30 ml butter 100 ml cream salt and pepper to taste

Method: OXTAIL Spoon enough flour into a plastic bag to coat the oxtail, add the meat and shake until well coated. Heat the oil in a large saucepan and brown the meat all over. Remove the meat from the saucepan and set aside. Sauté the onions in the same pan until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for another two minutes. Return the meat to the pan and add the tomatoes, tomato paste, wine, port and herbs. Mix well, cover and simmer over medium heat for four to six hours or until the meat falls off the bone. Stir every 30 minutes, adding more wine if the dish becomes too dry. MASHED POTATOES Boil the potatoes in salted water until soft. Drain and mash with a potato masher or press through a sieve. Stir in the butter and cream and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with fresh herbs.

Source: food24

Different types of booze impact desire for food differently


The type of alcoholic drink you consume may have an impact on your desire for food, suggests an Australian study.

A recent study by Dr. Anna Kokavec, a research psychologist, found that the additional nutritional content of various alcoholic beverages influence the body’s reaction to alcohol.

Kokavec said that DHEAS and cortisol, commonly known as a stress hormone, influence appetite, adding: “We need a sufficient release of cortisol to make us feel hungry.”

She found that cortisol levels went down in participants after the consumption of alcohol, and decreased their appetite despite having fasted for half a day.

But DHEAS levels varied depending on what type of alcohol was consumed.

The DHEAS levels initially took a dip for those who took beer before going up, resulting in an eventual increase in hunger.

Kokavec said: “Beer completely confuses the system.”

Consumption of red wine was also observed to have led to an increased appetite.

But, unlike beer and red wine, white wine completely switched off the HPA axis, indicating hunger remained low.


Receive Blog Updates via Email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Arniston Bay supports responsible drinking