De Wetshof Edeloes 2006, perfect with a slice of my Simnel Cake for Easter…

I am a total sucker for sweet wines. Add a touch of Botrytis Cinerea to a Riesling grape and you have me captured. De Wetshof Wine Estate in the Robertson Wine Appellation is well known for its superb Chardonnays, a Pinot Noir and one or two other fine wines. This is also the home of the De Wetshof Edeloes 2006. The soils and the climate are all perfect for grape growing. Danie de Wet, the patriarch, and his sons Johann [Marketing & Vineyards] and Peter [Winemaker] own and manage this beautiful gem in the Robertson Valley.

The grapes for the De Wetshof Edeloes 2006 are harvested on the estate. This natural dessert wine is only made in years when higher than average humidity allows the Riesling grapes to develop to the exquisitely ripe stage when the feature known as Noble Rot sets in. 

Being memorable – a brand dilemma

If you are in the business of producing or selling a value-adding product, the brand is a most important thing. We all  try to take the commodity and make something special and unique, something that has a better perceived value to the end-consumer. But to the consumer, are brands as important as they used to be?

I was treated to a beautiful tasting of their latest releases at the E.Guigal stand at the recent Prowein wine trade fair, when a representative from Drinks International came to deliver a certificate. E.Guigal has been listed at number seven on the Drinks International 2019 list of Most Admired Wine Brands. Quite an achievement! The list reads like the who’s who of the wine word: Penfolds, Torres, Villa Maria, Concha Y Toro and of course, other than Guigal, the famous French Chateux – Margaux, Petrus, D’Yquem. 

Pairing Pork

Indulging in exceptional pork dishes when visiting the Prowein show in Germany has become somewhat of a tradition. While they are usually served with a selection of beautiful local beers, the variety of recipes and their interesting sides can make your wine choice quite interesting.

This year, the German’s expert touch with pork has even lead to this tongue in the cheek article by Emile Joubert about South Africans depleting local pork stocks! While the international wine trade can be seen enjoying eisbein, schnitzels and Kassler chops all over Düsseldorf for the few days of the show, it is exactly this versatility of pork that brings somewhat of a wine challenge.

SA wine over time

One can’t help to feel slightly intimidated by the enormity of the global wine offering when walking through hall after hall of wine at the annual Prowein show in Düsseldorf. Still, measured by the activity on the South African stand, there seems to be a lot of interest in our wines. And I can’t say I am surprised. I think South Africa is the most exciting wine country at the moment. Yes, it is quite a claim, but I’ll explain my thinking.

I have tasted the complexity of E.Guigal, the brilliance of Sancerre, the charm of Provence – to name but a few of the wonderful wines available to sample at the three-day long event. 

Diemersdal Makes Hot News With ‘Frozen’ Sauvignon Blanc

Diemersdal Estate from Durbanville has received the first international accolade for its revolutionary Winter Ferment Sauvignon Blanc, winning a Gold medal at the Concours Mondial du Sauvignon held this year in Udine in Italy‘s Friuli region. Diemersdal Winter Ferment 2018, the farm’s second vintage of this specific wine style, was one of six South African wines to win Gold at this year’s competition, which drew 1 010 entries from 36 countries.

Diemersdal Winter Ferment is made using an innovative wine-making process where the Sauvignon Blanc juice is frozen during the harvest in February and then thawed five months later, after which it is fermented to produce a wine with exceptional tropical flavours.

Terra del Capo Sangiovese 2016 – Italian inspiration throughout the year

For wine aficionados who prefer a lighter, more accessible red wine, look no further than the Terra del Capo Sangiovese 2016 from Anthonij Rupert Wyne. This lighter red wine is perfect for all year enjoyment.

The Terra del Capo wines, an Italian-inspired range, was originally developed by the late Anthonij Rupert who not only believed that South African soils were well-suited to growing Italian grape varietals, but also had a love for Italy and the natural synergy between good food and wine, as it is also a characteristic so synonymous with the South-African way of life where food and wine are an integral part of our way of celebrating.

Diemersdal Increases its Focus on Research and Technology

Pioneering wine estate Diemersdal has contracted Dr Carien Coetzee, an experienced wine researcher and scientist, to assist this Durbanville winery in improving its technical and scientific capabilities aimed at continuing to produce cutting-edge wines, with the focus on its world-renowned range of Sauvignon Blancs.

Dr Coetzee recently formed her own private consultancy Basic Wine offering various specialist technical, research and scientific services to the wine industry.

De Wetshof Makes List of World’s Top 15 Chardonnays with Bon Vallon

De Wetshof’s Bon Vallon Chardonnay 2018 has been adjudged one of the top 15 wines in this year’s Chardonnay du Monde, the world’s leading competition for wines made from the noble white grape of Burgundy.

Some 696 wines from 36 countries were judged by a panel of international experts at Château des Ravatys, the wine estate of the Pasteur Institute at Saint Lager in the Burgundy wine region of France, with only 54 Gold medals awarded. De Wetshof’s Bon Vallon 2018, an unwooded wine, is one of only two South Africa wines to make the list of Top 15

In the Slipstream of the Strong Brand

Brand owners often see strong brands in their category as the unobtainable goal and unbeatable competition, but the small brand can not only learn from strong brands, strong brands can also provide a very good slipstream.

The strong brand is very important to its industry. Having a category leader that invests in research, product development and marketing, actually gives an unfair advantage to those who can learn from it – and that without paying the tuition.