In Interview with a winemaker

Q. When and where were you born ? 

“I was born in Bellville Cape Town on 29th November 1989.”

Q. Where did you study and what qualification do you have ? 

“I did winemaking and viticulture at Elsenburg Agricultural College and qualified in 2012.”

Q. Do you consider your winemaking to be different to others ? 

A very positive answer. “Yes, I believe each winemaker  has a unique approach  to winemaking  because  we were all  influenced  and inspired by  wines, cellars and winemakers, and educational institutions at different times. Techniques  are changing , products are changing  and don’t forget  our climate is changing.”

Q. How involved do you get in the vineyard ?

“Very involved  but not nearly as much as  I want to. I am in the vineyards every day. I have a very good relationship with our farm manager and our farm workers. It is important  to be involved  in every decision  and to physically work with your vines in order to manage your wine.”

Q. Do you have any varieties you prefer to work with ? 

“Yes I do, but I also prefer  to work with other varieties  depending on which areas they come from. I work  mostly with Sauvignon Blanc, I respect  the variety  and wouldn’t be where I am if I didn’t enjoy working with it.”.

Q. Have you been influenced by any particular winemaker or region ?

“Yes, seeing that I work with Sauvignon Blanc, I would say Sancerre has had a great impact.”

Q. What would you consider your greatest achievement as a winemaker ?

“Gaining the trust of my team.”

Q. What “secrets” have you “developed” that make your  wines different to others ? 

“At Cape Point Vineyards We focus on two varieties, Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. We have a unique terroir , it is cool and windy and our vines are very close to the ocean and this makes our wines different . It is no secret that we use  the two varieties together.”

Q. How important is modern winemaking equipment in your winemaking ? 

“It is very important.  We work with Sauvignon Blanc and it is a time sensitive grape, so we need to work quickly. We don’t have fancy  set up , we just have equipment  that will help us express the best qualities in our wines.”

Q. You mentioned that Sancerre was influential in your development. How did that happen ? 

“I completed my degree at Elsenburg in 2012 and travelled with a few classmates  through Burgundy, Loire, Sancerre, Champagne and Germany. It was an educational trip  to taste and experience international wines. I have been back to Sancerre  on a more focussed trip visiting various producers.”

Q. What other wineries have you worked at ?

“On returning from Europe I worked at Piekenierskloof and the in Stellenbosch before joining  Cape Point Vineyards in 2014. As for the future  I would love to continue my studies in wine and taste as many wines as possible. However I need to earn an income.  The studies and experience will come.”

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