The latest release of Org de Rac’s icon Die Waghuis 2019 red wine is not only from a new vintage but also sports a new look. This acclaimed Mediterranean-style blend from the well-known Swartland organic wine farm situated just outside the town of Piketberg is one of Org de Rac’s most awarded wines and is crafted from a unique blend of Grenache (40%), Shiraz (38%) and Mourvèdre (17%) with the 5% balance made-up from the white Verdelho grape.


Org de Rac has just released its first wine from the 2022 vintage, a Shiraz Rosé made by Lizelle Gerber who took over the winemaking reins of this premier organic Swartland winery at the end of last year. A seasoned Cape winemaker, Gerber says the first wine bears the quality and varietal expression one expects to find from organically farmed vineyards.


David Finlayson Wines from Stellenbosch reaffirmed the international status of South African Cabernet Sauvignon with its GS Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 announced Best Cabernet in the World at the annual Concours International des Cabernets in France. This annual competition is committed to awarding the world’s best wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and other Cabernet-related grape varieties.


Laibach, the Simonsberg estate that was purchased by neighbouring Kanonkop in January this year, will in future be known as Ladybird Vineyards. The new name of this 40ha property comes into immediate effect, with the current Laibach wine range to be phased out over the next 18 months, replaced by the Ladybird Vineyards brand of wines made from the property’s 36ha of vineyards.


A Cabernet Franc wine from Chamonix Estate’s mountain vineyards in Franschhoek took this year’s top prize at the annual Cabernet Franc Challenge that has since 2016 been at the forefront of recognising the quality of South African wines made from this classic Bordeaux grape variety. Chamonix was awarded the Cobie van Oort Challenge Trophy for Top Scoring Wine at this year’s challenge, with the Chamonix Cabernet Franc 2020 edging-out the 37 other entrants of this year’s competition.


Diemersdal, the sixth-generation family wine estate in Durbanville, South Africa, won one of four Gold medals handed to Cape wineries at this year’s Concours Mondial du Sauvignon Blanc held in Portugal. The Journal Sauvignon Blanc 2021, a barrel-aged rendition of this variety for which Diemersdal has become world-renowned, was awarded Gold as well as being awarded the Revelation Trophy for Best South African Wine on show.


Slow ripening of fruit in the vineyards due to a late summer resulted in Franschhoek-based estate Chamonix harvesting this year’s grapes 10 days later than average, with the first Pinot Noir being snipped in the second week of February. Neil Bruwer, Chamonix winemaker, says he already anticipated the late onset of harvest when spring and early summer remained comfortably cool.


De Wetshof’s Bateleur Chardonnay 2020, an iconic South Africa’s white wine, has been adjudged one of the top 10 wines in this year’s Chardonnay du Monde, the world’s leading competition for wines made from the noble white grape of Burgundy. Some 546 wines from 32 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 56 Gold medals awarded. De Wetshof’s Bateleur was the only South African wine to make the Top 10 list.


Just over a month after beginning its 2022 harvest, Diemersdal Estate from Durbanville has bottled its first Sauvignon Blanc, the estate’s signature grape variety. The Diemersdal Sauvignon Blanc 2022 hits the market on 4th March, one of the first Sauvignon Blancs from this year’s Cape vintage to be found on shelf.


Top image: Johann Krige

Johann Krige, co-owner of Kanonkop Wine Estate in Stellenbosch, has been elected as this year’s President of the International Wine and Spirits Competition (IWSC), the world’s leading competition for finding excellence in international wine and spirits. Krige becomes only the second South African to achieve this honour, the other being the late Dr Anton Rupert from the then Rembrandt Group, who was IWSC President in 1996.