Pizza travels the world and comes in all shapes and sizes. Round, rectangular, folded over as a calzone or as flat bread, this creation is still one of the most popular dishes in the world and the varieties and toppings are endless. Even though the perfect pizza (or pizzaioli as the Italians call it) is created by the Napoli in the way it was first done in the 17th century, the dish has evolved and migrated with its people. If you eat a pizza in the United States, the dough is rich and the bottom as thick as a car wheel, topped with kilograms of cheddar. We as South Africans have stayed quite close to the original recipe, but our version will be topped with a lot of local ingredients, such as biltong, pineapple or avocado. Most South African restaurants that are famous for their pizzas will also prepare the dish in the same ways as the Italians do, in a wood-fired oven, to keep the same authentic taste as la mama used to make them. Mulderbosch Wine Estate has perfected the art of traditional pizza-making and is one of the best places to taste a wood-fired pizza. Sit on the large terrace overlooking the beautiful slopes of the mountain or crawl together in front of the massive fireplace in winter to nibble on their amazing variety of pizzas. Or, book a Winelands Luxury Tour with Bikes ‘n Wines and experience pizza in a completely different way, paired with specially chosen wines. After we cycled a few kilometers to the top of the hill, some snacks are well-deserved, preferably accompanied by some good wines of course, and this is why we choose Mulderbosch. We were welcomed into the tasting room by the smell of melted cheese and the smile of the friendly staff members that have already started preparing the food for us. Sweaty, thirsty and curious, we slide around the table and listen to the beautiful story of Mulderbosch. The vineyard started producing wine in 1989 and has created some amazing brands since then, including ‘South Africa’s most celebrated Sauvignon Blanc’. Their signature brands are the Faithful Hound Range, the Savignon Blanc and of course an amazing noble late harvest
The general rule of thumb is to start with the white wines and slowly make your way to the reds and sweet dessert wines. We however, were encouraged to try different combinations with the pizza and decide which flavors WE thought worked well together. It was nice making up our own minds during the tasting.
The pairings that were put together where the Barrel Fermented Chardonnay (2010) in combination with the Artichoke and Black Olive Pizza, he Cabernet Sauvignon Rose (2013) with the Proscuito, Rocket and Pecorino pizza. A deliscious Portebilini Mushroom pizza with the Yardstick Pinot Noir (2012) – showing that a red wine can be paired wonderfully with a vegitarian dish and a Biltong, Sweet Pepperdew and avo pizza with the Faithful Hound (2012). My absolute favorite however, was the Fig, Blue Cheese and Panchetta pizza, which was paired with Noble late harvest 2011. I am not normally a fan of sweet wine and would never pair a dessert wine with pizza, but the combination was perfect and brought out the sweet flavors of the figs and strengthened the salty taste of the pancetta allowing the wine to show its unique flavors with each bite. Overwhelmed by the explosion of different flavors and beautiful wine, it was time to set off to our next wine and food pairing. But truth to be said, I could have stayed there all day. South African wine and pizza really are the perfect pair!!
Post by: Myrna Van Pinxteren – Marketing