In the Beginning..

In the Beginning..

This is a little bit about me (Bec) and my sidekick for this crazy adventure (Duane) and the thought process behind our wine, for those who are curious...

It has been a privilege over the last 20 odd years to be involved (and still be involved) in the food and wine industry. Over these years, I have been a part of restaurant launches, working at many of the 'big name' restaurants in the SA food scene,  guest chef in Singapore's Tower Club restaurant, a stint launching SA produce and fine wine in Laris on the Bund, various charity events and after coming second in the national Lexus Appetite For Excellence competition going head to head with Australia's best chefs,  I traveled to Tokyo in Japan to work in Luke Mangans restaurant 'Salt'. There are too many other fond foody memories to mention, these are a few of the stand outs.

Throughout this journey some things have been consistent - seek out passionate growers, respect what they are pouring themselves into and showcase their produce in the best way possible way I can. Continue pushing myself to keep learning, be true to myself and not settle for mediocrity. The journey at times is hard but also rewarding. 

I am not an extrovert and am very much more comfortable hanging out behind the scenes given my cheffy background it just seems more natural. I love creating joyous and happy experiences for people, creating memories and sometimes being able to help people remember things from their past through food and now wine. Woven into Charlish & Co is a multitude of stories and meaning, creating a rich tapestry that can transport you to another world.

In the background of the food industry I have been working with Duane of Coates Wines who is a walking encyclopedia of wine knowledge and skill. Duane has a deft touch with the multiple varieties he works with, I like to call him 'Wine Yoda'. After many, many  vintages, helping looking after ferments, cellar work, bottling and being involved in the wine journey every step of the way, it was natural to want to put my creative slant on making wine using the same ethos I use with food. It was with this mind set that Charlish & Co came into this world.

Charlish & Co is a thoughtful wine for the many, the name is my mothers maiden name who was the first to get me interested in food being a fabulous cook. Colours represent the countries that influence the style and the emblem a photo I took - a birds eye view over a tank after completing bottling at our winery, which is the small amount of lees that was still settling whilst we bottled our wine unfined and unfiltered on site.

Duane Coates, needs little introduction in the wine world. He recently gained his Masters of Wine after many years and is the exceptionally skilled winemaker and owner of Coates Wines. Duane is well known for his deft touch over a multitude of varieties and has an amazing ability to make elegant, complex wines that are ethereal in nature and a complete joy to consume.

Duane is a thoughtful winemaker that takes into account each vineyards micro climate, how to best to harness the varieties best characteristics and allow them to shine by using gentle production techniques. This means that structure, length, flavour and agebility are crafted very slowly and naturally into the wines using just the grapes and carefully selected oak. Wines are all wild yeast fermented, with extended time in tank on skins, barrel fermented if white or rose and settled with gravity before being bottled by us on site unfined and unfiltered. Constantly learning and wanting to hone his skills, Duane has traveled to do vintages in Burgundy, Rhone Valley and Portugal to learn from the best and push his own abilities further.

Cooper and Alley, two mischievous border collies full of adventure and fun. Maybe a little on the obsessive side when it comes to water and balls. They are full of beans most of the time. Cooper the older 'gentleman' of a dog is a bit of a sook and loves to have is chin scratched. He chases shadows, sparkly reflections, small balls, unicorns and other imaginary things that only Cooper knows about, he is incredible sweet. Alley is three, possibly a bit smarter than Cooper and is very good at using her Jedi dog mind tricks at getting people to do what she wants. She is very friendly, loves people, a good belly scratch, cuddles, chasing Cooper and is obsessed with big balls the hose and loves food...

 Welcome to our family x