Do you love good wine more than your family? Do you want to inject terms like ‘chewy tannins’, ‘laser-like’ and ‘angular’ into dinner conversation with the ease and grace of a Penfolds Bin 95 Grange Shiraz?
We’d like you to meet Cabin Fever – a festival down South for wine aficionados and aspiring vino geeks who want strange and wonderful over boring and bland. We’re introducing you because we think you’d get along.
Cabin Fever is a special festival, where wine lovers from all over WA and Australia discover premium wines from revered local and international wine makers, as well as gourmet food paired just right. Then there’s winter down South, which means cozy fireside feasts, rich reds and rolling green country – everything you need to indulge and enjoy.
Here are just a few tasters to whet your palate for the 2019 festival lineup!
Getting blind to improve your wine knowledge
No, we’re not talking about getting drunk. We’re talking about honing your palate, with an extraordinary blind tasting led by Cape Mentelle’s world-class wine makers, in the vineyard’s beautiful cellar.
This special Black Glass Tasting is for wine connoisseurs and those seeking to take their knowledge of wine to a new level. The tasting uses black glasses, which removes the sense of sight and encourages guests to focus on the taste and aroma of each wine.
You’ll be guided through the differences between international wines of the same variety, different vintages of the same wine, and other adventures designed to challenge palates of every level and advance your wine education.
If an intimate relationship with some of Margaret River’s best reds appeals to you, then Ransack the Cellar2deserves a spot on your short-list. The special shiraz museum tasting by Cape Grace is an exploration of the best small batch, basket pressed Shiraz releases over 15-years.
Then there’s Margaret River Reds vs the World, a super hero story starring local pinots and rich cabernets, as well as Chianti, Burgundy and other international classics, all paired with delectable dishes. This masterclass is hosted by Kate Lamont, bestselling author and award-winning chef.
Be a wine maker
Want to take wine tasting to a whole new level? Why not make your own blend? Can’t be that hard, right? * The legends at Clairault Streiker have their very own Wine Blending Masterclass.Under their guidance, you’ll concoct your own bottle, which you can swoon over later.
* For the avoidance of doubt, making wine is really hard, which is why normally we just buy it from people who are good at making it, or attend tasting events that allow us to drink the (literal) fruits of passionate wine makers backed by years of experience. Over and out.
Sweet and spicy
Cabin Fever is for folk who appreciate good taste, whether it’s from a food truck on the street or a 5-star restaurant. The Spice is Rightis a niche experience for lovers of spice and wine by food writer Sarina Kamini and Amato Vino wine maker, Brad Wehr.
Sarina explained that her spice students often ask her about the art of matching wine with spice, which led her to explore the concept further.
“Spice and wine play into each other because of the complexity of their chemistry and structures,” she said.
“In both cases, you’re dealing with interplays of acid and bitterness and texture and savoury elements and sweetness.”
During the masterclass, students will be drawn deeper into understanding their own palates.“You might try his [Brad’s] Fiano Bianco and note the grass and sunshine characteristics with a big, broad opening like a river across the upper-mid palate,” she said.
“I’ll then have you stick your finger into raw white pepper and ground mace, and have you taste the reflection of that wine’s character.”
Fortify your palate
Another niche experience kicking off at Cabin Fever this year is Get Porty6, a special tasting experience for lovers of fortified wine. Guests will be taken through 3 tasting stations, with each stop delving into the nuanced flavours of different ports.
Each tasting station includes gourmet offerings, such as share platters sure to sate even the most discerning palate. The evening is run by Happs Wines, a vineyard known for its creative prowess and love of flying in the face of convention.
And yes, this extends to their impressive port range too.
Cabin Fever is waiting for you
Break up with your doona and head South this winter for Cabin Fever. We’re a boutique festival for lovers of wine, beer, spirits and good food – all the elements of an epic winter break.
Hurry though. We sell out (in a good way).