SAAM 2006 Koopmanskraal Shiraz and roast loin of venison

Bisol prosecco and Eatlikeagirl ran a competition not long ago to find the best prosecco and food pairing. I entered but sadly didn’t even make the final (hey, I’m a wine blogger not a chef). Food Urchin won with his dish of Warm Winter Salad with Pheasant. Now, you’re probably wondering why I’m writing about a competition that I didn’t even make into the Final Five.

Well, early one Monday morning I got a DM on Twitter, “Fancy being my plus 1 for dinner tonite, Art can’t make it.” Turns out Eatlikeagirl’s BF had to bail at the last minute so I was called to fill in at the winner’s dinner. Lucky me! Niamh was there as Bisol’s representative and I got to tag along.

Roast Venison, with shallot and fig

The prize was an 8 course meal with wine pairings at the Chef’s Table at Trinity Restaurant in Clapham Common. One of the wines paired with our main of Roast Loin of Venison with red wine braised shallot, figs and pistacio was the Saam Mountain “Kooopmanskrail” Shiraz, Paarl, 2006. I’m not usually a big fan of South African wine but this shiraz was  a delightful companion. A savoury, bacon nose with hints of spices peeking through. A deep almost inky colour, on the palate it was all soft and silky round tannins, black pepper and sweet, ripe black  fruits rolling around. I thought the wine was a nice partner to the venison, a lovely dark fruitiness mingling with the venison and a chocolaty finish that seemed to last until the next bite.

I could write about the entire meal but I won’t bore you with the details. Suffice it to say, the other 7 courses were also excellently paired by Trinity’s sommelier, Rupert Taylor.

SAAM Mountain is one delicious South African wine that retails for about £11 online from


  1. I thought all of that and more about the Koopmanskraal ; ) Hmm that venison was great though eh? But I have to say that matching the Sauternes with the foie gras was my favourite combination.

    • Yes, the sauternes and foie gras was the best, unfortunately, I didn’t take a pic of the sauternes 🙁 might still do a post anyway! Great nite out!

  2. Melkman /

    Must say, I have been dipping into the South African wines of late. some of the are really good. wouldn’t say I am quite warming up to the Pinotage yet…

    • I’d have to agree with you Paul, there are some good wines on the higher end of the scale, don’t go for the cheap stuff. If you want good quality cheap wine, go to Chile. As for pinotage, the less said the better…:)

  3. wine witch /

    you should try the SAAM Pintoage too – especially if you don’t usually like Pinotage!

    • Isn’t it enough that I will drink SOME S.A. shiraz’s? 🙂 I have yet to be convinced of the merits of pinotage, still looking…..

  4. Sorry to be a pedant. It’s Koopmanskraal (not krail).

  5. hold on.. is that you actually recommending a South African wine… did you really write that it was “delicious”…

    • In my defense, it was the fourth wine of the evening 😉

      Seriously, it was a good wine and I can say I did enjoy it. I am coming around slowly to the better quality South African wines. Just don’t give me pinotage.


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