Entries tagged with “Clover”.


Kleinrivier Grana Frieda LloydParmalat SA was the cream of the dairy crop at the SA Dairy Championships 2014, having won the largest number of  champion awards for its dairy products.  The Klein River Cheese Grana was named 2014 Dairy Product of the Year at the DuPont Qualité Awards, organised by Agri-Expo a week ago.
Klein River Cheese is based outside Stanford, and its award-winning Grana is a slow-matured hard cheese.  Its strength, fruitiness, slight sweetness, granular texture, and hard and thick rind preserving the cheese impressed the judges.  Chief judge Kobus Mulder said about this cheese: ‘ ...the Klein River Cheese Grana so impressed the judges with its great taste and typical texture that they were in total agreement that this was indeed Number 1‘. 
Agri-Expo CEO Johan Ehlers said about the stature of the South African cheese awards:

Sustainably presenting these Championships for 180 years, as well as the impressive growth in number of entries and quality thereof over the last decade, is indeed an achievement of note. The Championships today represents the entire South African dairy industry and is perceived as one of the top dairy competitions in the world’.  More than 800 dairy products by 68 dairy (more…)

65 on Main Interior 2 Whale Cottage PortfolioThe restaurant at 65 Main Road used to be one of Green Point’s most popular when it was called Miss K, but nose-dived when it was taken over by an Italian owner and he renamed it after his daughter Giulia a year ago.  He lasted a few months before returning to his homeland, as his wife did not like Cape Town. This left the space for Whitney Wentzel to take it over and to open 65 on Main within two weeks, at the beginning of August.  It was a surprise discovery, following a most mediocre Camps Bay experience earlier that day!

I underestimated Whitney on first appearance, and thought her to be the manager, as a waiter came out to greet me even though she was outside as well.  I was left in the care of a second waiter Sheldon, who informed me that Whitney is in fact the owner.  Whitney studied at the Hotel School in Granger Bay, having graduated just before the World Cup, and worked as F&B Manager at The Taj, The Cullinan, Zimbali, and the Arabella Kleinmond hotels since then.  She had a dream to run her own restaurant, 65 on Main Whitney Wentzel Whale Cottage Portfolioand told me that she dutifully saved as much as she could, having been taught by her portfolio asset manager mother.  Although only 25 years old, I sensed that Whitney pays attention to detail, and knows exactly what she is doing, and that her establishment (more…)

De Brasserie Bar counter Whale Cottage PortfolioOn Saturday I was introduced to De Brasserie in Strand by Annette Beller-Sogor, whom I had met at an art exhibition recently and who lives in Gordon’s Bay.  She raved about the excellence of the restaurant, and mentioned that it is owned by the Belgian wine family Van Almenkerk from Elgin.   We found an unexpected European haven in a most unlikely town!

It was the most beautiful clear day, with the snow capped mountains of Somerset West visible from Beach Road.  False Bay looked flat and one could even see Cape Point, the raised former Kaapzicht restaurant offering an excellent view.  The restaurant exterior looks very modern from outside, but the restaurant name could be difficult to read, being partiallyDe Brasserie Exterior Whale Cottage Portfolio blocked by beams.  In smaller type size it states ‘Est 2012 by Almenkerk’, which one cannot read from the road.  Having booked last minute, we were seated at the bar counter first, but were promised a table as soon as one became available.

De Brasserie is Joep van Almenkerk, who is a most amazing host, friendly, attractive, charming, attentive, and he makes one feel that he knew what was happening at each table, and that he made every (more…)

Franschhoek has shown its quality of winemaking, by having two of its vignerons (Boekenhoutskloof and Chamonix) being named the top winery by Platter in the past two years.  Now the Winelands village is the Cheese Capital of South Africa too, in that Dalewood Fromage has been awarded the 2013 Dairy Product of the Year, for its six month matured Huguenot cheese, at the DuPont Qualité Awards dinner of the SA Dairy Championships.

Dalewood Fromage is located on the outskirts of Franschhoek, and is known for its excellent quality cheeses.  Its Huguenot cheese is the largest wheel of cheese made in our country, has a semi-hard brushed rind, and is slowly matured for six months.  It has an intense flavour, with nutty nuances.  Cheesemaker Rob Visser developed the cheese ten years ago.  SA Dairy Championships’ chief judge Kobus Mulder said of the cheese: ‘If this cheese should be available in the Haute Savoie region of France, those discerning cheese experts would appreciate it no end’.

Twelve dairy products were awarded the Qualité mark of dairy excellence:  Simonsberg Matured Gouda, Woolworths Mild Cheddar White, Woolworths Salted Butter (all three produced by Parmalat), Klein River Grana, Klein River SA Gruyere, Clover Processed cheese slices, Dalewood Fromage six month matured Huguenot cheese, Woolworths Magical Mousse Swirls (made by Fair Cape Dairies), Fairview Chevin with Garlic and Herbs, Woolworths plain fat free smooth cottage cheese (made by Lancewood), Langbaken Karoo Cheese’s Karoo Crumble, and Rhodes Food Group’s Fior di Latte.  Interesting is the domination of the Woolworths brand on this list, although their products were made by three different suppliers!  An additional 95 dairy products were awarded SA Champions, out of the total of about 800 dairy products entered by 69 artisanal and commercial producers.  A team of 59 judges, including dairy specialists and food writers, evaluated the top dairy products.

The SA Dairy Championships results reflect the passion and quality that goes into the making of dairy products, not only by artisanal producers, but also by the large dairy companies.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfoilio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage

Portobello Franschhoek Angelot is South Africa’s Dairy Product of the Year, awarded at the SA Dairy Championships earlier this week. The winning cheese is a washed-rind cheese, and beat 779 other dairy products to receive the honour, evaluated by a panel of 40 local and international judges.

Washed-rind cheeses are difficult to perfect, as the Ayrshire milk-based cheese ripens from the surface inwards. The Agri-Expo media release explains that “..the fermentation process as well as the metabolism of fat and protein must be managed extremely well by the cheesemaker”.  It is an extremely strong and pungent cheese, and the Portobello Franschhoek Angelot was judged to compare with the best of this kind of cheese from France. Washing the rind of the cheese as it matures changes the young cheese into a soft texture and its rind takes on an orange colour. As the cheese matures, the rind becomes sticky and reddish, and the aroma earthier, says the media release. “The paradox of a powerful aromatic rind and milder flavour is responsible for a veritable explosion in the mouth”.  Despite its strong taste and aroma, the Portobello cheese impressed the judges enough for it to receive this accolade.

The Outstanding Dairy Quality Qualité Mark of Excellence was awarded to 26 dairy products: Parmalat received six quality awards for their Simonsberg Matured Cheddar, Woolworths Farmhouse Cheddar, Parmalat Extra Matured Cheddar, Woolworths Vintage Cheddar, Parmalat Vintage Cheddar, and Simonsberg Traditional Cream Cheese. Clover won three awards (Elite Mild Cheddar, Feta with herbs, Mild Cheddar), and DairyBelle (Fiddlers, IWS Slice – Cheddar), De Pekelaar Kaas (Boerenkaas, Matured Boerenklaas), Lancewood (Woolworths Cream Cheese Plain, Woolworths Mascarpone Plain), Rhodes Food Group (Woolworths Ricotta, Portobello – Angelot), and Van der Poel Kaas (Hollandse Gouda – Extra Belegen, Hollandse Gouda – Oud) won two awards each.  Other winners were Anysbos Goat’s Milk – Halloumi), Fairview (Roydon Camembert), Goat Peter (Grison – Pecorino style), Le Montanara (Woolworths – Royal Ashton), Lausanne Dairies (Double Greek Yoghurt – Greek), Marcel’s Frozen Yogurt (Passion fruit), and Puglia Cheese (Pasta Filata Cheese – Burrata).

The SA Dairy Championships are the country’s largest dairy competition and Agri-Expo has been presenting it since 1834. According to Chief cheese Judge Kobus Mulder a rise in the quality of goat’s milk products can be seen, and especially goat’s milk yogurt can compete against the best cows’ milk yogurts on the market. “Producers are realising that the consumer’s taste and preferences are being refined and that they now increasingly expect products of higher quality,” he says.  “Aged and washed-rind cheeses are also gaining on the milder, more traditional products – pointing to a more developed consumer taste.”

The award-winning cheeses can be tasted at the SA Cheese Festival, running until Monday at Sandringham, off the N1, midway between Cape Town and Paarl.  Here is a link to the Portobello stand.

Agri-Expo, Tel (021) 975-4440.  www.cheesesa.co.za, www.cheesefestival.co.za

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage

South Africa has won five Gold Awards at the annual World Cheese Awards, against 2 400 cheeses from around the world.   Gold Award winners are Dalewood Fromage Huguenot, Fairview Roydon Camembert, Clover Mascarpone Cheese, Clover Medium Block Cheddar, and Clover Extra Mature Cheddar, reports the Sunday Times.

Silver Awards went to Foxenburg Estate’s Foxtail, Lourensford Estate’s Healey’s Gold, Kimilili Farm’s Witzenberger, Simonsberg Creamy Blue and Fairview Blue Tower.   Gay’s Dairy Prince Albert Royal, Lancewood Superior Cream, Lancewood Plain Chunky Cottage Cheese and Fairview Camembert 40 % reduced fat won Bronze Awards.