Cruxland Gin Cologne Workshop

Did you know that renowned wine and spirit company, KWV, launched a cologne in 1930? Since then they’ve made waves, now produce brandy, wine, & a craft gin too, and have become a household name that everyone knows and recognizes. To celebrate this centenary, Luke attended a cologne workshop and lunch with Cruxland Gin.

On a summer’s day in Paarl, greeted with a Cruxland Gin and Barker & Quin Tonic on arrival, Daniela (who hosts Perfume PrivĂ© Workshops) was set up between the wine barrels of KWV’s House of Fire, ready to show us how to mix cologne and craft our own unique scent. Vintage cologne bottles from KWV gave you that feel that they really have come a long way since their humble beginnings, and rightfully earned their place in the spirits world.

Perfume oil, together with alcohol, forms the base of any cologne and perfume; and Daniela supplied us with some interesting facts about cologne as well. For one, I had no idea that there’s really no such thing as a fake version of an upmarket cologne or scent. Their volumes of perfume oil and ingredients just vary, and some of these smell a-likes last longer on the skin than the original.

After crafting a cologne and lotion, we headed down to KWV’s ambassador chef, Mynhardt Joubert’s Kitchen. Aptly named, Mynhardt’s Kitchen. After appearing on – and winning with his cooking partner Tiaan – local reality cooking series Kokkedoor, Mynhardt went on to appear on another cooking series – Makietie – where he was introduced to and met KWV’s brand managers, and appointed as their brand ambassador chef. When you sit down to experience Mynhardt’s dishes, you can clearly see and understand how this partnership formed.

Mynhardt prepared a 4 course meal showcasing KWV’s truffle infused Cruxland Gin, each paired with a different tonic from Barker & Quin Tonic waters. Every dish oozed Mynhardt on a plate, and we truly got to feel and taste the passion this chef puts on into his creations.

Garnished with pickle spirals and herbs, our first Cruxland Gin with Barker & Quin Light at Heart tonic is set with Mynhardt’s array of tapas, bruschetta, charcuterie, and olives. The perfect start to a meal on a summer’s day in Paarl, everything about this dish married so well together, and the refreshing gin was that perfect touch to it. I could easily have gone for another round of this.

Mynhardt then presents an edible phyllo flower, beetroot cheesecake, with a micro herbs on the side. Together with a rose petal gin and Hibiscus tonic water, every sip and every bite brought out the tastes and flavors of each other. Who would’ve though that beetroot cheesecake would work but Chef Mynhardt.

Following this would have to be my favorite dish of the day – A rolled roasted lamb rib with sour cream gnocchi, paired with a carrot & butternut garnished gin and Indian tonic. I was always under the assumption that I hated gnocchi, but put a plate of Mynhardt’s in front of you, and that entire idea will shift. The meat was tender, soft, and every bite juicy; and the gnocchi was so creamy.

To end off the day, Mynhardt created white guavas, panna cotta, with cookie soil. I am unfortunately allergic to guavas, but the team quickly created one without them and wow, I didn’t ask or expect that at all, but I’m glad I did. The smoothness of the dessert and the final gin and Marula tonic, chocolate, & gold leaves was an end to a meal I don’t have words for.

A massive thank you for KWV, Perfume Prive, and the PR team for hosting and putting on this event. Next time you’re in Paarl, make sure you put a visit to KWV’s Wine Emporium on your itinerary (more info here) and make sure you book Chef Mynhardt for your next event. Check out his site here.

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