Article source: “Whale Tales” – by Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottages.
The Cape wine-growing region is represented on the Great Wine Capitals Global Network of the World, and has been selected to host the annual general meeting of the Network in 2008, reports Business Report. Other members of the network include Mendoza in Argentina, Melbourne, Bordeaux, Napa Valley, Porto in Portugal, Bilboa-Rioja in Spain, and Florence. Delegates will attend the AGM in Cape Town and will then visit the Cape Winelands in the week thereafter.
Franschhoek is following the lead of Robertson in attracting visitors to the more than 25 wine estates in its valley, by hosting its first-ever ‘Franschhoek Uncorked’ spring celebration over the weekend of 31 August. In addition to winetastings at each estate, they will also lay on other events to attract visitors. A R 50 access card allows unlimited wine tasting at all the participating wine estates. Further details are available on
The Paarl Shiraz Festival will be held at Nederburg in Paarl on 18 and 19 August. The newest Shiraz wines of ten Paarl producers will be presented to opera star Zanne Stapelberg and celebrity chef Francois Ferreira.At the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show, Cape Point Vineyards was announced as the most successful wine producer, followed by Vergelegen in second place and JP Bredell in third place, reports Hotel & Restaurant. Award winners by varietal included the Vergelegen White 2006 for Best White Blend; Bredell’s Cape Vintage won Best Port; Backsberg Babylonstoren Chardonnay 2003 won Best Chardonnay and Best White Wine; Best Merlot was awarded to Hillcrest Merlot 2005; Quinon Rock Simonsberg Syrah 2005 won Best Shiraz; and Longridge Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 won Best Cabernet Sauvignon. At the International Wine Challenge in London, the largest blind wine-tasting in the world, South African wines won 12 of the 260 gold awards. Gold winners included Fleur du Cap 2006 Unfiltered Viognier Limited Release and Sauvignon Blanc Unfiltered 2006; Kleine Salze Sauvignon Blanc 2006 and Family Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2005; Brampton Sauvignon Blanc 2006; Constantia Glen Sauvignon Blanc 2006; Groot Constantia Pinotage 2005; Hoopenburg Integer Chardonnay 2005; La Motte Pierneef Shiraz Viognier; Marklew Cabernet Sauvignon 2004; Nederburg Classic Noble Late Harvest 2006; and Bowen’s Folly Noble Late Harvest Riesling 2001.At the Concourse Mondial de Bruxelles, Fairview Solitude Shiraz won a grand gold medal, while La Motte, Spier and Drostdy Hof won multiple gold awards. At the Decanter magazine World Wine Awards, South Africa won eleven gold awards. At the inaugural Syrah du Monde Awards in France, Stellenzicht Syrah 2001 made the Top Ten shiraz list in the world, the only South African wine to do so. South African Syrahs won 34 gold medals, reports the Cape Times.WINE magazine has conducted a survey, showing that Shiraz is the favourite red varietal of South Africans, at 35 %, closely followed by Cabernet Sauvignon at 34 %. Merlot is declining in popularity and equals Pinotage (9%) in popularity. Sauvignon Blanc is the most popular white varietal, at 44 %, followed by Chardonnay (26 %) and Chenin Blanc (17 %), reports Hotel & Restaurant. Most popular wine estates are Vergelegen, Thelema and Rustenberg.
Beyerskloof Pinotage is the world’s most popular Pinotage, selling 1,5 million bottles of its 2006 vintage, reports Cape etc. Pinotage is a unique South African cultivar. Vrede & Lust winemaker Susan Wessels has been named ‘Woman Winemaker of the Year’, according to Bolander. She beat 53 other women winemakers. The judges sought a winner to serve as a role model for women choosing winemaking as a career, and to be a good ambassador for the local wine industry.