Unique wines from South Africa
We joined Bruce Jack of Bruce Jack Wines and Wine Events Scotland for the launch of Ghost in the machine at The Place in Stockbridge, Edinburgh. We have been aware of Bruce's wines since doing an at-home Zoom tasting with Bruce and Wine Events Scotland last year.
The new wines from Bruce Jack Wines
The range consists of six wines: Ghost in the Machine Chenin Blanc 2019; Ghost in the Machine Chardonnay 2020; Ghost in the Machine Sauvignon Blanc 2021; Ghost in the Machine Malbec Viognier 2019; Ghost in the Machine Cabernet Franc 2019; and the Ghost in the Machine Shiraz 2019.
What does Ghost in the Machine mean?
Ghost in the Machine refers to the resilience of human imagination in the face of an artificial-intelligence-dominated onslaught. Although, I did first think of The Police album of the same name and even Bruce mentioned this himself.
Here is Bruce himself with the range we sampled, as the label for the 2021 Sauvignon Blanc isn't quite ready yet we were treated to another Sauvignon Blanc, The Berrio, instead.
All of the wines are on sale now at the Wine Events Scotland website. The price is discounted until Sunday 6th February.
We were also treated to The Drinks Bakery biscuits to pair with the wines and their creator, Andy Murray (no, not that Andy Murray) was at the tasting too.
Ghost in the Machine Chenin Blanc 2019
Made using hand-sorted grapes and wild yeast then left in a mixture of French and American oak barrels for seven months without stirring the lees. This wine had quite a natural, yeasty aroma. It reminded me of sour and witbier-style beers and even tasted a bit like one too! Some sour beers cost as much as wine so that's not a criticism.
Pair with: Shellfish, Spicy foods, Lean fish, Mild soft cheeses like Camembert & young Brie.
Ghost in the Machine Chardonnay 2020
Hand-picked grapes made using a combination of natural and inoculated yeast with partial malolactic fermentation then eight months in barrel.
We found this to have a really earthy, buttery aroma and a lime finish.
Pair with: Shellfish, Fish, Chicken.
Ghost in the Machine Malbec Viognier 2019
This is 60% malbec, which is hard to believe, as it's so light in colour and taste - I don't think we've ever had a malbec viognier blend before but even if we had I'm not sure if we would even have a point of reference as only the skins of the viognier are used in the fermenting process and there is natural malolactic fermentation in the barrels, which are matured for 18 months and racked twice before bottling. It has a smoky mocha and dark fruit aroma and a light cherry taste. This is a red which is recommended to drink chilled.
Pair with: Red meats, and even turkey or roasted pork. Cheese - especially blue cheese.
Ghost in the Machine Shiraz 2019
85% shiraz with a little bit of malbec and grenache noir. Natural malolactic fermentation took place in barrels, which have been aged for 20 months in oak. The wine was also racked three times before bottling. This has a strong white pepper aroma and an off-dry bramble taste.
Pair with: Lamb, pork, red meat and vegetables such as aubergine.
Ghost in the Machine Cabernet Franc 2019
Another with natural malolactic fermentation in the barrels, aged for 20 months and racked three times before bottling. This one had a really jammy mixed berry and vanilla aroma and taste. Coarse filtration only, no fining and this was the most tannic of the three reds.
Pair with: Nearly everything! Goes well with meat and vegetable dishes. Tomato sauce based dishes and of course cheese.
Where to buy Bruce Jack Ghost in the Machine wines
These wines are available to buy online via Wine Events Scotland. Click below!
Many thanks to Wine Events Scotland and Bruce Jack Wines for inviting us to the tasting. There will be many more to come on Tuesdays every month at the Place, The Edinburgh Accies rugby team's cafe, bar and clubroom at 124c Raeburn Pl, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH4 1HG. It's just above the Coop in a new development beside the Raeburn.
Wine Events Scotland Zoom tastings will also continue for those who can't make the physical tastings.