WORDS: CATHERINE BLACK IMAGES: SUPPLIED

In conjunction with Creation Wines and glassware connoisseurs Riedel, the Clico Boutique Hotel in Rosebank hosted a Creation Wines chocolate pairing event this Women’s Day. Hosted in its function venue set in its lush grounds, the room has sweeping glass sliding doors to maximise the light and garden views – but also an indoor fireplace to keep you cosy on wintry afternoons.

The event was hosted by Jaco Wheeler, Clico’s general manager, who until recently was the sommelier at Creation Wines in the Hemelen-Aarde valley just inland from Hermanus. With this pedigree, he brings extensive knowledge of Creation’s varietals, including their viognier, pinot noir, merlot and syrah that form part of the tasting.

Pairing food with wine to enhance the flavours of both is nothing new – but focussing on chocolate as the pairing food is not as common. A boutique chocolatier in Knysna created the chocolate especially for the event, and with just a small mouthful of chocolate, it’s remarkable how much the flavour of the wine changes and its unique notes accentuated.

In the same way that food impacts your experience of a wine, so too does the glass you drink it out of. Through a demonstration of drinking the same wine out of different Riedel glasses, you’ll see just how much a wine’s flavour is affected by this. It makes a lot of sense, then, why different varietals are best match to specific shaped glasses – something that Riedel has made an art of. The key takeaway here, of course, is how well worthwhile it is to invest in good wine glasses.

The wine and chocolate pairing took place from 3pm to 5pm on 9 August at a cost of R200 per person. Best of all, any female who booked to stay over at Clico on the night of the 9th was able to join the event free of charge.

While Women’s Day marks the first event of its kind at the Clico, there are plans to host it in future as private team-building events, add-ons to a conference or meeting, or even as a fun year-end function.

Clico Boutique Hotel
011 252 3300