In Interview with a winemaker

Q. Where were you born ?

“In Stellenbosch”

Q. Where did you study and what qualifications did you acquire ?

“ I did I B.Sc Agric (viticulture and oenology) at University of Stellenbosch.  Graduating in  2000.  The I did a Post Graduate  Diploma  in Management practices  specialising in Wine Business Management at University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business and graduating at end of 2015.”

Q. Do you consider your approach different to others ?

“No !  But like most young South African winemakers, with great dedication.”

Q. How involved do you get in the vineyard ?

“Every day. It is just part of what a winemaker must do.”

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

“Shiraz. So Allesverloren is just perfect for me.”

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

“No. However, being here at Allesverloren the Malan influence has it’s effect ! ”

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

“Being able to make strong strategic moves in the cellar and in my duties on the estate in field of marketing. “

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

“I do not have any secrets.”

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

“It is important to have a good balance between old and new. At the end of the day one still needs to make a profit.”

Q. Are you the first Non-Malan to be winemaker at Allesverloren ?

“ There were Assistant winemakers before me but I am the first to have the title of Manager/Winemaker. So one can say that I am the first “non-Malan” winemaker but for overall marketing Danie  Malan is still the man. Also, after all the many years of Malan influence at Allesverloren things don’t just change !”

Q.  You say “many years”. How many years have the Malans been involved ?

“Daniel Francois Malan  arrived from Wellington in 1870 to take over the farm which was considered to be all lost after a raid by the San people. Slowly but surely he put the farm in order. In 1945 the farm was divided between two sons and the one who got the portion with the old farmstead began making wine specialising in Port style wines.”

Q. Now days you make a lot of non-port style wines ?

“As the demand for port declined the port varieties were used for dry red wines and other varieties were  planted hence the Allesverloren Cabernet sauvignon.” He continued “We also make a fortified muscadel but you will see the strong influence of port in our Touriga Nacianal dry red and Tinta Rose.” “We are also famous for our Shiraz.”

Q. What of the future ?

“I believe it will be possible  to get more South Africans to enjoy wine. We must all stop being so snobbish about wine, then people with no wine knowledge will feel more comfortable to drink wine .”

Q. Do you have any idea how to do this ?

“We are doing our best by providing a beautiful venue at the foot of the Kasteelberg for weddings and functions. Here people can drink wine while eating good Swartland food in the most glorious surroundings.”

Q. When you were studying at Stellenbosch did you ever think you would manage such an estate ?

“No way but I will still be fully involved with winemaking and set on my goal to get more people enjoying our great South African wines.”

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