Pinotage Wine Enhances Delicious Oxtail Recipe

Pinotage wine is best served with certain dishes. We offer two recipes complemented by this South African wine.

Pinotage Wine Enhances Delicious Oxtail Recipe

The Pinotage grape is a plant native to South Africa. The Pinotage was bred in 1925 as a cross between Pinot noir and Cinsaut. The name Pinotage is a combination of Pinot noir and Hermitage, another name for Cinsaut. The wine produced from the Pinotage grape often features earthy or smoky flavors with a hint of banana or tropical fruit. Pinotage wine is also made into fortified wine and red sparkling wine.

The first Pinotage seeds were planted in the garden of scientist Abraham Perold at Stellenbosch University in South Africa. The seedlings were forgotten when he was transferred to another location and were rescued by a young lecturer named Charlie Niehaus. Niehaus recognized the seedlings and had them transferred to Elsenburg Agricultural College. The seedlings were eventually grafted onto Richter 99 and Richter 57 rootstock. The best vine was later selected for propagation and given its new name.

The Pinotage grape is both hardy and productive, but it can be prone to viral diseases. The wine-making process is tricky and requires a certain amount of skill to ensure that the wine doesn’t develop an unnatural taste. Pinotage grapes have a tendency to develop isoamyl acetate during the wine-making process. The presence of isoamyl acetate gives the wine an odor that can resemble that of paint. To help reduce this unpleasant odor, Pinotage grapes require only moderate sun at the end of the growing season and a controlled temperature during the fermentation process.

The high-yielding Pinotage grape was made into a variety of low-quality wines at the start of its production. Pinotage wine became more popular following the end of apartheid in the 1990s. In 1995, the Pinotage  Wine Association was founded to promote this unique variety of wine.


One of the Many Producers of Pinotage Wine is Alvi’s Drift, Which Has Been in Operation Since 2006

Featuring a strong, dark color, Alvi’s Drift Pinotage wine exhibits a juicy flavor dominated by mulberry and blackberry. Hints of chocolate and dark cherries round it out, making it ideal for serving with roast meats and duck.


Pinotage Rose Wine by Alvi’s Drift is a Lighter Version of the Original Pinotage

The brilliant pink color is obtained by a shortened fermentation time with the grape skins. Pinotage Rose, fermented cold by the same process as white wine, is light and refreshing. The fruity overtones of raspberries and strawberries make this wine the perfect choice for outdoor events such as picnics.

Pinotage wine is best served with certain dishes. Below you will find two recipes complemented by this South African wine.


Slow Cooker Oxtail Stew

1 whole oxtail, cut in large chunks
125 ml Coke
125 ml Pinotage wine
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. paprika
1 liter water
1 packet dry brown onion soup
2 cubes beef stock
4 T. olive oil
4 medium onions, chopped

Heat a large pot on medium-high heat. Add the oil and the onions. Allow to fry for approximately five minutes or until the onions begin to turn brown on the edges. Add the oxtail, a few pieces at a time and allow to brown on all sides. Repeat until all oxtail pieces have been added. Add salt, pepper and paprika and mix well. Pour in the coke and the wine and allow to simmer for five minutes.

Place the ingredients in the slow cooker. Break up the beef stock cubes and sprinkle on top. Add the soup powder and ½ cup of water. Stir, cover and allow to simmer on low for 10 to 12 hours. Check the water level after four or five hours and add more water if necessary. Enjoy!


Braised Eggplant with Garlic and Basil

¼ c. light soy sauce
1 tsp. cornstarch
3 T. vegetable oil or peanut oil
1 tsp. sugar
1 pound Chinese eggplant, sliced into ½ inch discs
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
¼ tsp. salt
¼ c. fresh basil leaves
2 tsp. chili bean sauce

Combine 1 ½ cups water, soy sauce, sugar and chili bean sauce in a small bowl and stir well. Mix ¼ cup water and the cornstarch in a separate container.

Heat the oil on medium-high-heat in a large frying pan or a Dutch oven until it starts to shimmer. Add the garlic and the eggplant and sprinkle with salt. Stir occasionally for about two minutes or until barely softened.

Stir in the remaining water and the soy sauce, sugar and chili bean mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Leave uncovered and allow to cook until the eggplant is tender and the liquid has been reduced by half. This process should take approximately 15 minutes.

Ensure that the cornstarch-and-water mixture is well mixed, add it to the pan and simmer until thick. Feel free to add more salt, soy sauce, chili sauce or sugar as needed. Remove from heat, stir in whole basil leaves and serve immediately.

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