Budget Bennie Shows the Way


Hat’s off to Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan for calling closing time at the bar on the SA gravy train. Hard-pressed SA taxpayers will not buy the argument that booze is essential to diplomacy. Get a grip chaps and BYO. Heaven knows, our political masters are paid enough to bring their own. And President Jacob Zuma, as the only non-drinker in the ANC, shows the way. Nicolas Sarkozy was teetotal as was George W. Bush, so it clearly can be done. bh Budget Bennie Shows the Way But what made my eyebrows fly off the Richter Scale was the bombshell in Rapport – best wine coverage in Sunday newspapers these days – that Cape Winemaster Bennie Howard had recently restocked the cellars of parliament.  “Die Kaapse wynmeester Bennie Howard het onlangs 3 000 bottels wit- en rooiwyn teen sowat R107 000 vir die kelder gekoop.”

Clearly at an average cost of less than R36 a bottle, Bennie was not a big buyer at the Cape Winemakers’ Guild Auction earlier this month. And we’re talking whites and reds, here. Bennie makes the R80 ceiling for the Best Value Wine Guide of Mark Norrish look wildly over-optimistic. How does he do it? If I was a snoozing Sunday editor, I’d be beating a path to Bennie’s door for a few Christmas stocking fillers. Bennie’s picks will make a change from the usual freebees columnists push as pay backs which fool no one but their editors, who prefer beer. As for the columnists, seems that they sell their samples, anyway, and recycle the press releases as copy.