Astronaut is the name of the Pinotage that Anibal Coutinho makes from our Lemoenfontein grapes. So when US Cosmonaut Greg Olsen decided to make a nouveau, Beaujolais style wine, that he should do so from the Pinotage grapes he grows on his farm in Paarl, comes as no surprise.
For unexpected expressions of Pinotage are the calling card for Greg, a physicist who spent time on the International Space Station. He even took Pinotage vines into space and then across to his ranch in Montana. Daughter Kimberley lives in Franschhoek and runs the terrestrial side of the business and on Saturday she’s organized a fun day on the farm as part of the Ommiberg wine festival.
As she emailed “our theme this year will be Space. We have quite a venue planned, and my father will give two space talks during the day. There will also be a DJ, fresh oysters for sale, fresh pizza for sale, complimentary ice-cream ‘ninja’, cellar tour, a beaujolais nouveau made from pinotage grapes, waterslide, supervised activities for kids, and memorabilia from my father’s trip to the ISS on display in a bedouin tent.” Presumably left over from the January wine festival in Stellenbsoch.
So if you want to see Pinotage go into orbit, head on down to Olsen on the slopes of the Klein Drakenstein Mountains, the ones latter day Huguenots built a tunnel through. Saturday from 10.00-17.00 which is T-2 days, and counting in Ziggy Stardust speak!