Unlock the Scents of Summer with Cathedral Cellar’s Triptych and Sauvignon Blanc

South Africa is known for many unique wonders, one being its sensational summer months. And just in time for the festive season, cu...

South Africa is known for many unique wonders, one being its sensational summer months.

And just in time for the festive season, cue lazy days next to the ocean, chatty afternoons with family and friends, and spending time around packed festive tables while sharing special food and drink.

This season, KWV’s Cathedral Cellar range of premium wines and KWV ambassador chef, Mynhardt Joubert, are joining forces to create a sensory experience like few: unlocking the Scents of Summer.

Like seasons, wine has a particular scent – an aroma that tells the story of the soil in which it was grown, the weather when it was harvested, the touch of the winemaker and the barrel in which it rested. At the heart of this enigmatic process? Energy. An energy that is released as soon as the wine is opened and poured. An energy with the special ability to transform conversations into confessions, family dining into dancing, moments into memories.

In celebration of summer, Cathedral Cellar invites sun chasers to journey with them as they unpack the unique storytelling aromas of its wines while creating new memories with Scents of Summer.

Both the Cathedral Cellar Triptych and Sauvignon Blanc capture the essence of two very different summers. The Cathedral Cellar Triptych 2016 is the result of heat spikes during October, preceding harvest. This introduced a drier than normal December and early January, followed by yet another heat wave that lasted six weeks. The sun that ripens the grape to perfection can also overripen, and to prevent the latter, 2016 turned into one of the earliest harvests in recent wine history. The Cathedral Cellar Triptych displays the delicate balance of that warm harvest with a bouquet of concentrated black fruit, a juicy richness and a slight tinge of sage.

A long, dry season might have been written for the 2018 harvest, and the Cathedral Cellar Sauvignon Blanc tells that tale. It was the third year in a row that the groundwater levels hadn’t been recharged, and while October and November of the preceding year saw higher rainfall, it wasn’t enough to make up the deficit. The harvest was delayed, and when the grapes were picked, they were noticeably smaller in size and yield. But this summer had a gift, too: the compact berries packed huge concentration, at full ripeness. The Cathedral Cellar Sauvignon Blanc 2018 smells of that gift – it is an incredibly expressive wine with distinct aromas of grapefruit, melon rind, apple and a touch of lime. The palate is fresh, but without that biting acidity so often associated with this varietal. 

To pay homage to these two very different summers, Chef Mynhardt has created two festive dishes to match to these two wines: tobacco and rooibos smoked springbok fillet with cocoa nibs and vanilla mashed orange sweet potato paired with Cathedral Cellar Triptych, and coconut fried and grilled prawns with papino, red onion, coriander salsa and grilled pineapple perfectly accompanied by Cathedral Cellar Sauvignon Blanc. 


Tobacco and rooibos smoked springbok fillet with cocoa nibs and vanilla mashed orange sweet potato

Served with Cathedral Cellar Triptych 2016

Serves: 4

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Easy to prepare


  • 1 large springbok fillet, sinew removed and dried with kitchen towel
  • 20g pipe tobacco (we use chocolate flavoured tobacco)
  • 50g rooibos tea
  • 20ml brown sugar
  • 100g cocoa nibs
  • 800g orange sweet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 50g butter
  • 50g muscovado sugar
  • 10ml vanilla paste
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Balsamic reduction for plating
  1. Start by lining a large, deep oven tray (that can work on a gas stove) with foil.
  2. Mix together the tobacco, rooibos tea and sugar and cover the base of the tray.
  3. Place a wire rack on top.
  4. Place the springbok fillet on the wire rack and cover the whole tray with foil.
  5. Place the tray on a gas hob on high heat until it starts to smoke. Leave for about 5 minutes.
  6. Turn off the hob and let it stand for another 5 minutes before you take the meat out.
  7. Roll the fillet in cocoa nibs and roll tightly into plastic wrap. Let it set for 20 minutes before slicing the fillet.
  8. Place the sweet potato in water and boil until soft and tender.
  9. Add the butter, sugar, vanilla paste and some salt and mash together until smooth.
  10. Serve the sliced fillet with the sweet potato mash and some balsamic reduction.

Coconut fried and grilled prawns with papino, red onion and coriander salsa and grilled pineapple

Served with Cathedral Cellar Sauvignon Blanc 2018

Serves: 4

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Easy to prepare

  • 800g large Argentinian prawns, cleaned and deveined (leave half with the shell and head in place, and remove the shell and head from the other half)
  • 200g desiccated coconut
  • Some flour and beaten egg to cover the prawns
  • 1 medium-sized papino or papaya, deseeded and peeled
  • 1 medium-sized red onion, peeled
  • 20g fresh coriander leaves
  • 1 medium-sized pineapple, cut into 8 wedges with the skin on
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Pre-heat a griddle pan until it is smoking. You can also grill the prawns and pineapple on the braai.
  2. Drizzle some olive oil over the prawns with the shells and heads and pineapple wedges and grill until well charred and cooked. Keep aside.
  3. Toss the other half of the prawns without the shells and heads in some flour.
  4. Shake off excess flour and place the prawns inside some beaten eggs.
  5. Take the prawns out of the egg and crumb with the coconut.
  6. Place on a prepared baking tray and place in a very hot oven for 5-7 minutes or until the coconut has browned and the prawns are cooked.
  7. Cut the papino and red onion into small cubes and mix together.
  8. Finely chop the coriander and add to the papino and red onion. Season to taste.
  9. Serve the coconut crumbed prawns, grilled prawns and grilled pineapple with the papino salsa.

With festive season looming, and with harvest 2020 quietly ripening, Cathedral Cellar wishes you your most memorable summer yet. 

Win a Scents of Summer gift box

Share in the energy of summer and the joy of sharing a bottle of Cathedral Cellar wine by following Cathedral Cellar (@KWV_CathedralCellar) on Instagram, and post your summer moments on social media using the hashtag #CathedralCellarScentsofSummer to stand a chance to win an aromatic treasure chest created by Chef Mynhardt. The gift box includes a range of scent jars, two bottles of Cathedral Cellar wines, two recipes, olive oil from Willow Creek Olive Estate, and an African summer-inspired tea towel from online décor store Knus.

About Cathedral Cellar

In 2018, KWV celebrated 100 years of excellence since the iconic brand started trading in 1918. Centennial celebrations included the launch of KWV’s Cathedral Cellar. The impressive cellar was originally built in 1930 as a private events venue and is currently under the custodianship of KWV ambassador chef, Mynhardt Joubert. Cathedral Cellar houses an awe-inspiring collection of 32 barrels measuring approximately three meters in circumference – a striking backdrop to this serene and mystical setting.

With five premium varietals, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Triptych, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, the KWV Cathedral Cellar collection impresses with wines made in a more serious style. The wines’ quality is a true reflection of KWV’s selection ethos using grapes from only the very best vineyard blocks and vintages across the Western Cape.

Visit the KWV Cathedral Cellar website for more information. Cathedral Cellar can be found in selected Checkers stores nationwide.

Experience Cathedral Cellar wines through tours and tastings at the Emporium in Paarl. For more information, contact the KWV Emporium on +27 (0)21 807 3007/8 or send an email.

Pictures: SUPPLIED

©2019 Herman Lintvelt - WineTourismZA

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