Stellenbosch presents an all-new Celebration of Wine

Stellenbosch – A Wine Celebration, the latest innovation by Stellenbosch Wine Routes offers an unprecedented opportunity to re-discover the wines and wine people of the illustrious wine region over the course of a single weekend. From Thursday, 2 August to Sunday, 5 August, this top-drawer vinous show will toast excellence and diversity through a handful of intimate and exclusive, must-attend events.

The most famous legends of Stellenbosch will be brought to life through fantastic wine tastings and elaborate fine dining, pairing delicious food and wine with fascinating, entertaining wine personalities, all at one cosy location: De Warenmarkt, in the historic heart of the City of Oaks.

The weekend celebration will highlight the region’s winemaking heritage, premium status and internationally-recognised excellence. Among the events a special focus commemorates Women’s Month and the contribution of female winemakers, while another showcases the essential ingredient of family tradition entwined with the very DNA of Stellenbosch wine.

On Thursday, 2 August, Boutique Brilliance & Big Bottles opens the show. This walk-around wine tasting takes place from 6PM to 10PM and features a dozen of Stellenbosch’s boutique wine producers. Demonstrating that big is not always better, this is the opportunity to discover and stock up on rare and lesser known wine treasures. The entry fee of R290 per person includes access to a feast of delicious canapes and the harvest table with a special cheese fondue.

On Friday, 3 August, the Women-in-Wine brunch puts the spotlight on the region’s female winemakers. A three-course meal will be served from 10AM to 12PM, with bubbly and wines and the stars themselves taking centre stage. Tickets are R400 per person.

The formal dinner, titled In The Company of Legends, takes place later on Friday, 3 August, and offers the exceptional chance to meet some of Stellenbosch’s greats over a premier four-course, food-and-wine extravaganza. Among the luminaries who will attend are world-renowned winemakers and exceptional story-tellers. Tickets to the event, which starts at 6.30 for 7PM, cost R650 per person.

On Saturday, 4 August, Father & Son acknowledges the unique contribution of skill and knowledge that is passed from generation to generation, to Stellenbosch wine excellence. Truly a once-in-a-lifetime occasion, this dinner will feature some of the famous father-and-son winemaking duos, who will share their stories over four courses, paired with their wines. Tickets to the event, which also starts at 6.30 for 7PM, cost R750 per person.

The final event of Stellenbosch – A Wine Celebration will be a very special lunch at noon on Sunday 5 August. The Cabernet Long Table will underline the region’s leading prowess with the noble Cabernet Sauvignon cultivar – status that is held thanks to its incomparable concentration of local and international award winners. The four-course meal pairs vintages of the variety with every dish, including dessert and will see some of local Cabernet Sauvignon winemaking royalty in attendance too. Tickets are R650 per person.

Tickets to each of the Stellenbosch – A Wine Celebration events are very limited. To book, visit www.wineroute.co.za.

For more information, contact Elmarie Rabe on 021 886 8275 or info@wineroute.co.za.

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KAAPSE WYNTOERISMEKONFERENSIE FOKUS OP INNOVASIE

The Business of Wine & Food Tourism-konferensie, nou in sy derde jaar, word op 17 Oktober op die Spier-wynlandgoed buite Stellenbosch aangebied en die indrukwekkende paneel plaaslike en internasionale sprekers sal die tema van innovasie aanspreek.

Die Amerika-gebaseerde wynspesialis, Cathy Huyghe, is vanjaar die hoofspreker. Huyghe is’n wynskrywer vir Forbes en het ook al vir die Harvard Business Review geskryf. Ander sprekers op vanjaar se konferense sluit in Suid-Afrikaanse innovasieleier, Peter Greenwall, die talentvolle Wandile Mabaso, ’n jong, Frans-geïnspireerde sjef wat reeds wêreldwyd gereis het en tans die Johannesburgse kostoneel aan die gons het, asook sjef Kobus van der Merwe wat ’n unieke eet-ervaring met bestanddele uit die Weskus omgewing geskep het, asook Khuthala Gala-Holten, adjunk-besturende direkteur van Joe Public en Tim Harris, hoof-uitvoerende beampte van Wesgro.

Kostes beloop R4 400 (BTW uitgesluit) per persoon. Studente betaal net R1 750 (BTW uitgesluit). ’n Spesiale afslag is beskikbaar vir SAACI-, SATSA-, SITE- en Kaapstad Toerisme-lede.

Vir meer inligting oor die konferensie of om aanlyn te registreer, besoek www.wineandfood.co.za.

Cakes, Macaroons and Meringues with a Twist

Born and bred in South Africa, Anmar Odendal-Wilding is a renowned pastry chef who has made her mark in the wedding cake industry. She is definitely living life 100%, which assisted her in receiving numerous prestigious awards, including being selected as the best wedding cake designer in the East of England.

After studying at the Institute of Culinary Arts just outside Stellenbosch, Anmar worked as an executive chef on yachts based around the Mediterranean and the Pacific. While working on these yachts, Anmar cooked for the likes of Uma Thurman, Liam Neeson and Natasha Richardson.

Anmar’s next culinary achievement was in England, where she worked as a pastry chef and had her own highly successful wedding cake company, Crumb Cakes. After eight successful years in the United Kingdom, Anmar brought Crumb Cakes to South Africa.

Since Anmar moved back to South Africa in 2017, she has been working as a pastry chef at the Slippery Spoon Kitchen in Stellenbosch whilst running Crumb Cakes SA. One of her specialities is multi coloured, delicious macaroons.

Anmar is a creative thinker and each cake is out-of-this-world and sometimes over-the-top unique, depending on the client’s brief. She recently also started a vegan-friendly baked goods range. The vegan friendly creations are as gorgeous as her initial range and it is hard to believe that they are made without dairy or eggs.

Although Anmar is based in Stellenbosch, she often travels to different South African destinations for catering or demonstrations. In 2013, while working in England, Anmar came all the way to South Africa to present a macaroon-baking demonstration at the popular Innibos Festival in Nelspruit, Mpumalanga.

As for the future, Anmar is looking forward to some very exciting developments. Later this year, she will be publishing a book on her work, which will include some of her delightful recipes.

One thing is for sure, Anmar is a pastry chef you should keep your eyes on!

Delheim se Sampioen-Snuffeltog vir Natuurliefhebbers

Die Kaap se wilde sampioene steek amper weer kop uit. Maak dus seker dat jy vanjaar heelvoor in die ry is vir Delheim se eksklusiewe Sampioen-snuffeltog Opskiet-reeks! Kom leer by die meesters hoe om wilde sampioene uit te snuffel en te kook by hierdie fungi-ervaring, wat eksklusief vir nuwe- en bestaande lede van die Delheim se gereed-vir-aksie Wynklub is.

Lidmaatskap is so maklik soos 1-2-3! Kies jou 12 gunsteling Delheim-wyne, voltooi jou bestelling en jy is in! Lidmaatskap gee jou nie net toegang tot die sampioen-snuffeltog nie, maar ook ander Delheim geleenthede, kompetisies en spesiale vrystellings.

Delheim – ‘n Stellenbosch steunpilaar en die Suid-Afrikaanse pionier van sampioen-en-wyn ervarings – lê teen die Simonsberge, waar die verleidelike heerlikheid in natuurlike woude se klam grond skuil. Wanneer die weer net reg is, speel ’n stille wonderwerk – net twee maal per jaar – in die woude af: die sampioene steek kop uit.

Meeste mense is maar skrikkerig om wilde sampioene uit te snuffel, want hulle is nie seker watter geskik is om te eet nie. Die Delheim Sampioen-snuffeltog is net die geleentheid om dit te verander.

“Die voorkoms van die wilde sampioene is ’n spesiale tyd, want dis iets wat Moeder Natuur op haar eie vermag,” sê Delheim se matriarg en ervare sampioen-snuffelaar, Nora Sperling-Thiel. “Dis hoekom ons veral sensitief is oor die bewaring van ons wilde eko-stelsels op die landgoed. Ons is baie versigtig in ons benadering jeens die boerdery en ons beperk ook die hoeveelheid deelnemers aan die sampioen-uitstappies.”

Vanjaar se formaat van die Delheim Sampioen-snuffeltog Opskiet-reeks beklemtoon die uitsonderlike geleentheid deur ywerige snuffelaars tot net twee uitstappies te beperk.

Snuffelaars kry ’n kort oorsig oor watter sampioene geskik is en watter vermy moet word, die geleentheid om ’n kundige gids te vergesel op ’n eerste-van-die-seisoen snuffeltog, ’n sampioen kook-demonstrasie en ’n heilsame, fungi-gefokusde middagete met bekroonde Delheim wyne daarby.

 

Die eerste Opskiet uitstappie wat in Maart, April of Mei (afhangende van die eerste reën) sal plaasvind, sal uit ’n groep van net vier gelukkige snuffelaars – wenners van die gelukkige trekking van Delheim Wynklub-lede – bestaan. Hulle sal die geleentheid kry om metgeselle saam te neem. Dis ’n intieme byeenkoms en die tyd tussen hoë dennebome, is beslis ’n ervaring uit ’n ander wêreld.

Vir die tweede uitstappie, iewers in Junie/Julie, sal alle Delheim Wynklub-lede die geleentheid kry om te kan bespreek. Die groep sal groter wees, maar steeds die volle program teen R 650 pp insluit.

“Die bevestiging van die presiese datums sal twee dae voor die geleentheid wees – ’n vereiste wat net gemaak word met die verskyning van die sampioene,” sê Nora.

Daar is geen tyd vir um en ah nie. Delheim se Wilde Sampioen Snuffeltogte het hoogste vermelding ontvang in die Beste Wyn-ervaring kategorie in die Drinks International Wine Tourism Challenge 2017 en besprekings vir vanjaar se geleentheid sal vinnig opgeraap word.

Alle navrae en besprekings – ook om aan te sluit as Wynklub-lid met al die voordele, waaronder die Delheim Sampioen Snuffeltog Opskiet geleentheid, kan na wineclub@delheim.com gestuur word.

 

* BELANGRIK: Wilde sampioene is totaal van die natuur afhanklik en dus onmoontlik om met akkuraatheid te voorspel, veral na lang droogte-periodes. Alhoewel die Delheim-geleenthede tydens die sampioen hoogseisoen gehou word, kan die landgoed nie waarborg dat daar wel op die dag sampioene sal wees nie.

COLLABORATION, SKILLS DEVELOPMENT, UNIQUE EXPERIENCES – KEY TO CAPE WINELANDS TOURISM GROWTH

11. Lunch enjoyed at Spier by the speakers and delegates (HR) The recent edition of The Business of Wine & Food Tourism Conference saw those operating in the Cape’s wine, food and hospitality industries gather at Spier in Stellenbosch to glean insights from local and international specialists, and engage in informative discussions focused on growing revenue and loyalty for tourism in the Cape Winelands.

 

1. Margi Biggs, convenor of The Business of Wine & Food Tourism Conference 2017 (HR).jpg

Margi Biggs

Now in its second year, the annual conference is convened by seasoned travel and tourism specialist, Margi Biggs.  She believes that travel and tourism can potentially contribute significantly more than it currently does to South Africa’s national GDP.  The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has calculated that last year, the direct contribution of the travel and tourism sector to the South African economy was worth R127,9bn, accounting for 3% of the country’s GDP.  The indirect contribution was approximately 9%, according to South African Tourism.

 

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Rico Basson

Rico Basson, executive director of Vinpro, the non-profit organisation that represents around 3 500 South African wine producers and cellars, used the example of the Wine Industry Strategic Exercise (WISE) initiative, launched in 2015, to illustrate how collaboration is paramount to unlocking value and stimulating growth.  WISE was developed by the South African wine and brandy industry to help it reach a desirable future state by 2025. Its robust and adaptable approach is geared towards driving profitability, global competitiveness and sustainability. It is a collaborative effort driven by Vinpro, SALBA (South African Liquor Brandowners Association), SAWIS (South African Wine Industry Information and Systems), WOSA (Wines of South Africa) and Winetech (Wine Industry Network of Expertise and Technology). 

Basson mentioned key targets for the industry towards 2025, such as building a greater presence in strategic markets, specifically in the US and Africa; growing Cape wine tourism to increase visitor numbers by 25%; and increasing Cape wine tourism’s annual direct contribution to South Africa’s national GDP from R6 billion to R16 billion. He also highlighted the use of technology and research in continuing to create a sustainable future for the overall industry.

19. Tim Harris, CEO of Wesgro (HR)

Tim Harris

Tim Harris, head of Wesgro, the Western Cape’s trade and investment promotion agency, foresees continued growth potential in tourism for the region. He referenced the Fourth Industrial Revolution, its disruptive effect on all economies, and especially the necessity for Africa to adapt in terms of digital skills development, changing business models and public-private partnerships to advance its ‘Africa rising’ narrative.

 

 

8. Speaker, Linda d'Holt Hacker getting more insight from the speakers (HR).jpg

Linda D’Holt-Hacker

“The Cape Winelands offers a high quality slow product in a world where time is seen as increasingly rare and valuable. The Business of Wine & Food Tourism Conference provides an incredible opportunity to celebrate this,” Harris said.    

5. Amanda Kotze-Nhlapo from South African Tourism (HR).jpg

Amanda Kotze-Nhlapo

Representing South African Tourism, Amanda Kotze-Nhlapo explained how the entity is rallying South Africans and the economic sector to fully support tourism growth with the launch of the ‘We Do Tourism’ movement, on 29 September 2017. “Every citizen of South Africa plays a role in local tourism. We are in a crisis if we don’t support tourism. It creates jobs, enriches lives and brings people together.”

 

 

 

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Jerry Mabena

Jerry Mabena, CEO of Thebe Services that owns the Thebe Tourism Group surmised that South African Afropolitans could boost the annual South African economy by more than R2 billion and grow tourism. That is if they are given appealing reasons to travel to the Cape Winelands.  He described Afropolitans as cosmopolitan Africans; global in their outlook, straddling the divide between African and Western cultures, and having the disposable income for travel. Yet they are not really targeted by the local travel and tourism industry.

Mabena suggested that wineries rethink and refocus their marketing efforts, and create events around wine drinking, activated in spaces that Afropolitans can relate to. “Make wine drinking accessible – take away the snob value and mystery but leave some ‘upmarket’ attributes.  Encourage Afropolitans to meet the owners and/or winemakers at cellars – make them feel like they are guests, not just random customers.

“Big events such as the annual Soweto Wine Festival have and continue to play a major part in bringing wine and wine-related experiences into the consideration sets of Afropolitans. Create more of these and combine wine with whisky, cognac and other spirit experiences. Experiences create stories. Polo and wine festivals seem to attract Afropolitans – expand those.”

 

10. Dr Robin Back (HR)

Dr. Robin Back

Dr Robin Back, a South African-born, US-based academic who conducts wine tourism research in both South Africa and the US, shared the findings of his recent research study that looked specifically at the effect of a winery visit on brand loyalty and purchasing behaviour. He explained that the results indicated that winery tourism does in fact have a positive long-term effect on brand loyalty and purchasing behaviour, but that the strongest effect of positive winery visitation appears to be on brand loyalty, which is shown not to diminish over time. He also mentioned the significant role of frequent and continuous communication with those who have visited, to further strengthen the bond between the brand and the consumer. Back added that wine tourism should be incorporated into overall winery marketing plans.

4. Delegates listening to Don Shindle (HR)

Conference delegates learned about the art of impeccable service from Don Shindle, an expert in customer service from Napa, California’s renowned wine tourism epicentre. He explained the importance of expertly and thoroughly trained staff, empowered to act with confidence, in achieving top service standards.  “Everything communicates, so engage your workers and enable them to perform.  Be agile in practices to create loyalty beyond reason, and delivery your brand promise. Teamwork means I am you, and you are me.”

3. Don Shindle general manager of The Westin Verasa Napa (HR)

Don Shindle

Shindle’s thinking was echoed by Linda d’Holt-Hacker of South Africa’s The Touch Company, that assists large and small organisations in developing and fine-tuning outstanding customer journeys and brand experiences. Showcasing a model she calls ‘The Hosting Paradigm’ as a tool for effective decision-making, she also outlined how crucial it is for employees to understand very clearly why they do what they do – in other words, to have a sense of real purpose aligned with the brand they represent. In addition, she shared insights on how to align guest experiences with a brand’s core values, and highlighted the need for a shift in how service staff are perceived and think about themselves. 

 

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Kevin Arnold

Waterford Estate’s Kevin Arnold outlined best practice for winery tasting centres. He believes that wine brands are built in the tasting room and that unique, innovative and personal tasting experiences are paramount to creating memorable value. “At Waterford, we’ve found that we sell more wine and build greater loyalty when offering guests not only a tasting, but an experience such as a vineyard safari where they get to taste our wines outside, in the vineyards. Personalised experiences help us form real connections with our guests. Wine brings them through the door, experience brings them back.” Arnold views visitors as guests, not customers.  He also believes in in-depth training and development of staff, mentorship, building confidence and ensuring that employee aspirations fit with those of the brand.

 

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Kelly Jackson

General manager of Contiki in South Africa, Kelly Jackson, presented ways in which virtual reality could be very effectively used as a strategic marketing tool to bring a product or service to life. She however cautioned against using virtual reality as a gimmick, and suggested that brands use it only if it fits with the experience they aim to promote.

 

 

7. Andrea Robinson, master sommelier for Delta Air Lines (HR)

Andrea Robinson

Meanwhile, world-renowned US lifestyle TV personality, Andrea Robinson, one of only 23 female Master Sommeliers in the world, covered the process of choosing wines for Delta Air Lines and showed how the airline uses its marketing and media properties such as its in-flight magazine and on-board entertainment system to highlight specific wines and wine routes.  She also elaborated on other marketing activities including sponsorships and partnerships, themed wine region promotions in strategically located hubs, and the up-skilling of flight attendants in terms of wine knowledge and service.

 

9. Panel discussion headed by Dr Jaisheila Rajput, Jessica Shepherd, Luke Grant & Joe Stead (HR)

Dr Jaisheila Rajput, founder and CEO of Tomorrow Matters Now (TOMA-Now), an independent consultancy focused on developing the green economy with special emphasis on value chain management and growth, together with Joe Stead of the Spur Corporation and Luke Grant and Jessica Shepherd of The Table at De Meye in Stellenbosch, winner of the Eat Out Sustainability Award in 2016, presented a panel discussion focused on the role hotels, wineries, restaurants and consumers can play in promoting a sustainable future, particularly addressing the issue of food waste management.

 Rajput said that the sustainability movement had already started in South Africa, with clear examples provided by Stead, Grant and Shepherd. Stead mentioned that although waste management is a complex issue, the Spur Corporation has had major successes, from Spur restaurants recycling cooking oil to produce biodiesel, to John Dory outlets eliminating all plastic packaging in a bid to tackle the issue of ocean pollution.   

 

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Wendy Masters

Reputation management and strategic communication specialist Wendy Masters of The Phoenix Partnership, based in Cape Town, educated delegates on the key phases of crisis communication: prepare, respond and recover. She believes that reputation is about delivery, not promise, and described how pro-active approaches to crisis situations could actually strengthen brand reputation, citing the example of The Vineyard Hotel in Newlands, Cape Town.  “When the water shortage crisis in the Western Cape became evident, immediate action was taken to remove plugs from bath tubs and install low-flow shower heads in all guest bathrooms. These efforts clearly demonstrated the hotel’s commitment to sustainability, recognised and applauded by guests and other stakeholders such as local government,” Masters said.  

 

Eikendal Vineyards swirls Cheesecake & Wine Pairings this Summer

Eikendal Cheesecake & Wine HR (2)

Zesty citrus flavours, followed by a rich berry delight Eikendal Cheesecake & Wine HR (1)and rounded off by a sultry salted caramel enchantment. These are the delectable cheesecakes that are on offer at Eikendal Vineyards as part of their brand new Cheesecake and Wine Pairing Experience – the first Stellenbosch wine estate to offer this.

Eikendal’s crisp Sauvignon Blanc pairs like a summer’s breeze with the creamy Lemon Cheesecake, while the plump Berry Cheesecake fuses seamlessly with the Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay blend. The pairing ends on a high note with the estate’s award-winning Janina Unwooded Chardonnay, which brings out her charm alongside the decadent Salted Caramel Cheesecake. All worth every single calorie!

Eikendal Cheesecake & Wine HR (11)

Eikendal, conveniently situated between Stellenbosch and Somerset West on the R44, isEikendal Cheesecake & Wine HR (7) renowned for its award-winning, internationally acclaimed wines. Apart from the Cheesecake & Wine Pairing Experience, visitors can enjoy a Wine Tasting (which includes a tasting of the estate’s exclusive Icon range), a Cookie Tasting for the young ones, Cellar Tours, Fly Fishing, Cheetah Encounters, Vineyard Rides and a kids’ play area. The popular Cucina di Giovanni offers languid lunches and dinners and visitors even have the option of extending their Eikendal Experience by spending the night at the Eikendal Lodge.

The Eikendal Cheesecake & Wine Pairing Experience costs R80 per person and will be swirling the senses from October 2017 until April 2018, Tuesdays to Sundays between 10:00 and 16:30.

Eikendal Cheesecake & Wine HR (14)

To book for this sensory indulgence or for any queries relating to the Eikendal Experience, contact Chantal-Lee at 021 855 1422 or send an email to info@eikendal.co.za.

Wine and Food Conference to show how to grow Loyalty and Revenue for Cape Tourism

 

The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has calculated that last year, the direct contribution of the travel and tourism sector to the South African economy was worth R127,9 billion, accounting for 3% of the country’s GDP.

Margi Biggs

Commenting on the WTTC findings presented in its recent 2017 Economic Impact Report, Margi Biggs, convenor of the upcoming The Business of Food and Wine Tourism Conference, set to take place in Stellenbosch in the spring, said:

“The good news is that the council has projected the sector’s contribution to domestic GDP will rise by 2,7% in 2017, a very welcome increase given the subdued state of our local economy.”

A seasoned travel and tourism specialist, Biggs contends that travel and tourism can contribute still further to the national GDP, “provided we, as an industry, take note of new trends in consumer spending, behaviour and priorities to make our food and tourism offerings more compelling and more competitive, while upping the standard of our execution and service delivery.”

“If we get it right, the impact will be substantial.  It will help to build skills, create economic opportunities and reduce unemployment, generating greater prosperity for more South Africans.  We have all the right ingredients: beautiful locations, a growing reputation for world-class food and wines, and friendly and welcoming hospitality staff.  We just have to finesse what we are doing with the technology and research we now have at our disposal, while applying new thinking to marketing and problem-solving.”

 

She said the annual conference, now in its second year, would be presented by a selection of international and local tourism specialists and would focus on best practice and how to improve the customer experience. An important feature of the forum would be the various ways in which wine and food impact customer loyalty.

“There is a growing view internationally that customer experience will ultimately drive more loyalty than complicated point-based programmes and schemes. We need to take note.”

Amongst this year’s keynote speakers is CEO of SA Tourism, Sisa Ntshona. His address will explore how the food and wine experience can promote South Africa’s competitive advantage as a tourist destination. Included in the line-up of international speakers are Don Shindle, an expert in customer service and GM of the Westin Verasa Napa in California’s renowned wine tourism epicenter. World-renowned TV personality, Andrea Robinson, one of only 23 female master sommeliers in the world will also be there. Dr Robin Back, a South African-born, US-based academic who conducts wine tourism research in both South Africa and the US will be looking specifically at the impact on loyalty of cellar door visits. The programme will also cover such topics as virtual reality, attracting new markets, and PR trouble shooting.

The conference takes place at Spier on Wednesday, 20 September.

For more information on the conference, or to register online, visit www.wineandfood.co.za.

Early Bird registration is now open at a fee of R2 950 (excl. VAT) per delegate, and ends on 12 June. The standard cost per delegate is R3 950 (excl. VAT), and ends on 18 August.  If you register and pay after 18 August, the cost rises to R4 500 (excl. VAT) per person.