Born to be Wilderer

I feel as though I’ve started to play with food again. I recently upgraded my kitchen so the novelty of cooking has been revived. Will share the DIY in a separate post. You too will be amazed at how a little can go a long way. But I digress…I recently spent some time the Spice Route Estate. The property is home to CBC Brewery, a pizzeria, their restaurant Barley and Biltong, Brenda’s Preserves where I made my very own spice (himalayan pink salt, dried garlic, garlic flowers and pink peppercorns), Bertus Basson’s restaurant, The Barn’s Artist Gallery and glass blowing studio, DV Chocolatier and of course, the Wilderer Distillery.

Image by @GreatGrampops
Image by @GreatGrampops

The Wilderer (Vill-de-rer) Distillery is a family run operation. The current distiller is still being trained by Helmut Wilderer. Apparently Helmut employs a sensorial approach to distillation, so instead of focussing on technicalities, he encourages using qualitative means. While both men sit together in the tiny room that houses the copper pot stills, only one of them is holding a broom handle which is uses to administer a quick smack to the wrists for non-performance. Once you taste the clean, flavourful gin/grappa/infused white spirits, you too will  be ok with overlooking the menial clout.

There was a bottle of Fynbos grappa lurking in my kitchen. The herbaceous aroma is quite heady with aniseed being the front-most flavour. I used it to deglaze my pan of coconut oil, butter, garlic, chilli and thyme – pasta sauce of the future. Once the thick coat of alcohol lifted (after all, it’s a white spirit), what was left was a light, liquorice sauce to bathe my linguini and fresh courgettes in. I also threw in a few slices of beef rump from the previous night. Was a pretty bang on dinner for 1.


2 Replies to “Born to be Wilderer”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *