The situational variables at Vaughan Johnson’s Waterfront wine emporium have improved immeasurably since Millpark baker Vovo Telo opened their shop next door. Now wafts of freshly baked brioche float through the cellar to such an extent that it smells like a Champagne bar. VJ (below) is off to Burgundy tomorrow but before he left he was singing the praises of Lormarins Optima 2008, a Cabernet/Merlot blend he sells for R132 a bottle.
“I told Johann (Rupert) to drop the ‘ from L’Ormarins and he did. The wine has improved immeasurably. In fact, I hear it was nominated for five stars in Platter, not that that would impress you.” VJ had stopped by Johann’s Alfred Dunhill shop in London and hearing the Richemont chairman was expected, spent the waiting time watching the Springboks in the private underground cinema.
As for Platter sighted nominations, I hear eyebrows were raised when a newbie taster nominated a dozen this year. Which makes the nomination of Lormarins even more unusual as L’Ormarins is decidedly more U for sighted sippers. But I’m sure Lormarins got there on its taste credentials, rather than the reputation of the owner. We’ll see.
The ‘ was not the only thing to go. In fact, the bottle was totally pimped up and now looks more Château Lafite than Lormarins ,although dropping the punctuation must have had L’Académie française spluttering into their pastis as they nibble their pastries. Perhaps everyone’s favourite sommelier around town, Jörg Pfützner, will follow Johann’s lead and do a Prince Harry in Las Vegas and shed the threds, grammatically speaking.
Not that VJ sings from the WOSA hymn sheet. “I’m disappointed by SA wine. It never quite lived up to what we hoped for…” with the exception of Lormarins and the Cabernets from Webersburg that VJ pronounced “weebersburg” with a flutey laugh.