Cape Town, 28thMay 2012: Avondale Wine Estate, in conjunction with Platter’s South African Wine Guide, held the fourth and final tasting of its Luna Taste Test project last Thursday 24th May at Dear Me in Cape Town.

The project, which tested the validity of the biodynamic calendar developed in the 1950’s by Maria Thun, was attended by a panel of Cape Town’s top wine aficionados. The experiment aimed to identify whether there was any truth in the theory that the taste of wine will vary depending on which time of the month it is consumed. According to the lunar calendar, there are four specific cycles; namely fruit, root, flower and leaf- with the fruit and flower cycles generally being regarded as the more favourable days for wine tasting. The panellists were to taste Avondale’s range of nature-friendly wines in four separate tastings and across four tasting cycles to ascertain whether there was any merit to this concept.

The panellists were kept in the dark as to which cycle they were experiencing for the duration of the project. After the fourth and final tasting, Avondale Proprietor Johnathan Grieve enlightened the team as to the order of the test cycles, the first being the Fruit (14th May), the second the Leaf (16th May), the third the Root (22nd May) and the final tasting being held in the Flower cycle (24th May).

What was interesting to note was the unanimous agreement on the differing characteristics of the wines in each respective cycle. The panel’s feedback was as follows:

Fruit tasting: The fruit notes were described by panellists as “almost overpowering”, with the wines appearing full-bodied and rich in character. Avondale’s Camissa was a firm favourite, with Wine Extra magazine’s Maryna Strachan remarking: “Camissa rosé blend is absolutely unique. Very distinct Turkish Delight and rose petal flavour on both nose and palate.”

Leaf tasting: The general consensus was that the wines tasted less sweet, with a dominant minerality. Wine writer and blogger Jonathan Snashall commented: “Day two stunned the panel because the wines were so different. Gone was Monday’s primary fruit exuberance to be replaced with more developed or tertiary aromas on the whites and more savoury notes on the reds. The wines could not have developed that much in 48 hours.”

Root tasting: The panel felt that the wines were “subdued” and tasted as if they had “gone to sleep”. “This 3rd tasting has convinced me this #lunatastetest has some merit, wines tasting different yet again,” Tweeted Maggie Mostert of Batonage blog.

Flower tasting: The panel collectively agreed that the flower day was the best tasting day overall for the wines. The wines were described as “expressive”, “elegant” and “more structured with a fresh, fuller-bodied character.” Cathy Marston, wine educator and journalist, felt that it was the best day for the Avondale red wines, in particular. “The wines are showing very beautifully tonight with a little less fruit and a little more elegance than day one.”

Grieve believes the variations experienced in Avondale’s wines in accordance with the cosmic cycles to be a good thing. “If there weren’t such marked differences, I would be disappointed that our BioLOGIC® approach to wine-faming was not reaping dividends!” he says.

“We would like to thank our fantastic team of panellists for being part of this experiment. The Luna Taste Test has convinced us that there is merit to the theory that the moon and planetary cycles influence the way we enjoy wine. The conclusion drawn has been that, with the exception of perhaps the Root cycle, there are no “good” and “bad” days for tasting- it would ultimately depend on the palate and preferences of the individual,” concludes Grieve.

If you want to plan your tastings please visit Johnathan’s blog at the following link, where you can find the Tasting Calendar in detail or contact us for further guidance.

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