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Best Of Wine Tourism Awards 2021 - Winners announced

Celebrating innovation and excellence in wine tourism throughout the nine greatest wine regions in the world, wineries across the Western Cape entered into the prestigious Great Wine Capitals Best Of Wine Tourism Awards.

These awards provide an opportunity for wineries and other visitor-serving businesses in each region to gain exposure and recognition for their commitment to presenting leading wine tourism options while giving visitors a one-stop list of the best places to experience.

This international annual competition is designed to reward the wineries in each of the Great Wine Capitals Global Network’s member cities, for their excellence in seven different categories, including:


Legal News: Drinking and driving this festive season

The National Road Traffic Amendment Bill

This Bill is an attempt to reduce the number of accidents and deaths on our national roads. It was approved by Cabinet in March this year, but has not yet been enacted. When it comes into force, the permissible blood alcohol level for driving will be 0%. Currently, the blood alcohol limit is 0.05 grams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, and 0.24 milligrams of alcohol per 1000 millilitres of breath (lower for professional drivers). There are some concerns about a zero limit. For example, some medications contain traces of alcohol. Even tamari (a type of soy sauce) has a tiny percentage of alcohol in it because of the fermentation process used in its production. So it is possible that the courts will be inundated with DUI cases where the defendant has never touched a drop of liquor.


Finalists Announced For The 2020 Diners Club Winemaker And Young Winemaker Of The Year Awards

The finalists for the 40th Diners Club Winemaker and 20th Young Winemaker of the Year awards have been announced. Five winemakers have been shortlisted to compete for the prestigious Winemaker of the Year award, while five will vie for the Young Winemaker of the Year title.

Diners Club introduced the Winemaker of the Year award to encourage local winemakers to raise the standard of wines produced in South Africa. The Young Winemaker of the Year award was established to encourage winemakers under the age of 30 to develop their skills, express their individuality, and add to the future prestige of South African wines internationally. The awards focus on quality and recognition of excellence and are regarded as the country’s most prestigious and well-respected wine industry competition.


Haute Cabrière Pierre Jourdan Tranquille, a wine for all times

Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are the two noble grapes grown by the von Arnim family on their Haute Cabrière Wine Estate up on the Franschhoek Pass above the quaint country town which is a wine Appellation of its own.

These are the grapes from which the great wines of Champagne and Burgundy are made. Since the mid 1980s, the family has specialized in Cap Classique wines and a variety of innovative still wines released regularly by Takuan von Arnim, the Cellarmaster.

The Haute Cabrière Pierre Jourdan Tranquille is very similar in nature to the base wine for the Cap Classique wines produced by Takuan and his team in the cellar. A blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, the wine is bottled in a Burgundy shaped bottle, very appropriate, and closed with a screw cap.


Meridian Newsletter

In our October newsletter, we discuss the following:

· All you need to know about Beyerskloof Pinotage

· Our recent Portfolio Updates

· What’s New:

o The Grapesmith wines by Simonsig

o Was Jou Hanepoot by Marras

o Klein Constantia Vin de Constance 2017

· Meridian Portfolio Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2020 winners


Delaire Graff Botmaskop

Crafted by Bruwer Raats in 1992 as a Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend, the Botmaskop created waves as one of the most expensive wines in South Africa then at ZAR120 a bottle. Since its re-introduction in 2008, the Botmaskop blend has carried on the legacy becoming one of South Africa’s most awarded red wines, acquiring a near-cult status amongst wine aficionados.

The namesake of this sophisticated wine is the historic mountain peak upon which the estate is situated. Originally named Bootmanskop, meaning ‘Boat Man’s Peak’, the picturesque Botmaskop mountain with its expansive views over the Cape Peninsula and Atlantic Ocean served as the lookout point for the Huguenots who had settled in nearby Franschhoek.


Diemersdal Releases Fourth Vintage of Unique “Frozen” Sauvignon Blanc

One of South Africa’s most unique and awarded Sauvignon Blanc wines, the Winter Ferment from Diemersdal Estate in Durbanville, has seen the release of its third vintage. This wine, made from grapes harvested in February 2020, undergoes fermentation in the South African winter months after the freshly crushed juice was frozen for four months to give the wine a uniquely expressive fruit profile.

Since the first vintage of Winter Ferment in 2017 the wine has won numerous accolades, including spots in the FNB Top 10 Sauvignon Blanc Competition and the Sauvignon Blanc Trophy at the National Young Wine Show. This year’s 2020 vintage is the fourth time the Winter Ferment has been nominated for a Sauvignon Blanc Top 10 trophy.


2020 Perold Absa Cape Blend finalists announced

There is immense anticipation among wine enthusiasts as this year’s Perold Absa Cape Blend finalists are announced.

Since its inception in 2011 , this competition has grown in stature with wine producers embracing the opportunity to create uniquely South African red blends with Pinotage as its key component. This wine category has increased its relevance on the global stage and has become a key offering in the wine ranges of some South African wine producers.

Four wineries have also made the finalists list of this year’s Absa Top 10 Pinotage competition which is always an exceptional achievement for the winemaking teams. These wineries are Anura , Rijk’s , Wellington Wines La Cave and Viljoensdrift from Robertson.


Tim Atkin Report SA Wine Report puts Simonsig quality in the spotlight

A handful of wines from the pioneering Stellenbosch winery has again been placed among South Africa’s best in an acclaimed annual report by UK-based wine journalist and Master of Wine, Tim Atkin, highlighting Simonsig quality.

Using the international 100-point scoring system, Tim picked his favourites this year to include Simonsig’s The Garland 2015, which rated 92; Chenin Avec Chêne 2018, 90; Cuvée Royale 2017, 91; Frans Malan 2016, 90; and, Tiara 2016, 92.

“Naturally, we’re happy with this latest achievement,” says Michael Malan, the third generation Simonsig winemaker who heads up red wine production. “Our winemaking tradition has always been rooted in a commitment to produce wines of international standard..."