Producers of the Robertson Wine Valley perform well at the 2017 SA Young Wine Show

The prestigious SA Young Wine Show, dating back to 1833, showcases the best wines of a current vintage. 231 wines were entered from the Robertson Wine Valley for their regional Young Wine Show.  The winners were announced on the evening of 22 August, at an elegant black and white awards ceremony held at the Robertson Town Hall proudly sponsored by JF Hillebrand.  17 local wine producers from the valley entered and received amazing results with 5 gold, 80 silver and 99 bronze. With 56 class winners.

Here are the Champion winners of the year:

  1. Bon Courage Trophy for Cabernet Sauvignon – McGregor Winery
  2. CJ Petrow Trophy for Chenin Blanc – Langverwacht Winery
  3. De Wetshof trophy for Chardonnay – McGregor Winery
  4. Imvusa Stainless steel Trophy for Sauvignon Blanc – Goedverwacht Estate
  5. Infigro Trophy for Pinotage – Rooiberg Winery
  6. Johan de Wet Trophy for Other White Wine – Bon Courage / Gewurztraminer
  7. Jonkheer Trophy for Dessert Wine – Mooiuitsig
  8. Mountain River Trophy for Dry White – Langverwacht Winery / White Muscadel
  9. Overberg Trophy for Muscadel – Bon Courage
  10. Pon van Zyl trophy for Colombar – Rooiberg Winery
  11. Rietvallei Trophy for Sweet White – Ashton Winery / Chenin Blanc-White Muscadel
  12. Ritter Stainless steel trophy for Port – Bon Courage
  13. Roelou Barry trophy for Noble late harvest – Bon Courage
  14. Robertson Wine Valley for Other Red – Rietvallei / Cabernet Franc (wooded)
  15. RX SA trophy for Merlot – Bushmanspad Estate
  16. Standard Bank trophy for Shiraz – Robertson Winery
  17. Vinochem trophy for Dry Red – Le Grand Chasseur / Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot
  18. Lafffort Trophy for Best 5 nominated wines – Bon Courage
  19. JF Hillebrand for Robertson Champion Wine – Ashton Winery

The Pon van Zyl trophy has a rich history and also handed over at this prestigious awards ceremony. Pon van Zyl served as Robertson Winery’s first winemaker and took Robertson from its humble beginnings to where it is today. The inaugural Pon van Zyl trophy was handed to Danie de Wet in 1987. Since then numerous important and esteemed role players in the Robertson region have been awarded this trophy for the outstanding service to the Robertson region. Every year at the Robertson Young Wine Show ceremony, the Pon van Zyl trophy is given to someone who, according to the committee that comprises of all of the previous winners, have made a positive contribution to the Robertson Wine Valley’s wine industry.

Screenshot 2017 09 01 at 10.20.20 e1504254072638 Producers of the Robertson Wine Valley perform well at the 2017 SA Young Wine Show

Pieter Ferreira from Graham Beck

This year, it was given to Pieter Ferreira from Graham Beck, who has tirelessly ‘pioneered’ to establish the Robertson region as one of South Africa’s leading Cap Classique wine regions. Pieter joined the Graham Beck family in 1990 from Clos Cabriere in Franschhoek to fulfill the vision of the late, Graham Beck – To produce South Africa’s leading Cap Classique and also establish it as a unique world class product. Their maiden vintage at Graham Beck was in 1991. Pieter was instrumental to prove that a warmer region can be the best kept secret for Cap Classique in South Africa. “Our secret weapons are our rich limestone soils and sunshine” says Pieter. He believes that if you manage the sunshine you will produce the highest quality of base wine for Cap Classique. Together with the huge diurnal shift in temperature between day and night “we preserve the natural acidity in the grape that provides the brightness in our Cap Classique”. Today the Robertson region has 11 Cap Classique producers and has become the most important hub for purchasing Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from other producers from other geographical areas. “Very interesting indeed” says Pieter.

Over the years Graham Beck has been awarded many awards and accolades. In 1994 their Cap Classique was used at the inauguration of Nelson Mandela and also in 2008 it was used by President elect, Barack Obama. In 2004 Pieter won the Diners Club Winemaker of the Year for Graham Beck’s Blanc de Blancs 1999.

Pieter is currently chairman of the Cap Classique Producers’ Association and has been instrumental in growing the awareness for this ever-growing category and help in ‘fine-tuning’ the minimum standards for Cap Classique. There are exciting developments coming in the next couple of years.

Pieter is honored and very proud to receive the Pon van Zyl trophy and he says “I remain on an extraordinary journey of discovery…. In pursuit of the perfect bubble”

Congratulations to all members of Robertson Wine Valley and to all the other wine region winners.