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Delhi Wine Club
South African Wineries at the BRICS 2016 Trade Fair in Delhi

Posted: Monday, 17 October 2016 18:18


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South African Wineries at the BRICS 2016 Trade Fair in Delhi

Oct 17: Five South African wineries and their export reps participated in the National Pavilion of South Africa in Hall No. 18 at the BRICS Trade Fair 2016 organized by FICCI at Pragati Maidan on 12-14 October 2016 prior to the BRICS Summit held on October 15-16 in Goa where all the Head Of the States of BRICS countries met. Subhash Arora who visited the 5 participants on the last day, soon on his return from China is appalled at the apathy shown and lack of the right profiled wine professionals

Click For Large ViewThe five producers/reps from South Africa were Cyril Meidinger (Robinson and Sinclair), Denise Johnson (Zevenwacht), Henriette Jacobs (Spier), Emil Kanstinger (Anura) and Gavin Whittaker (Van Loveren).

Robinson and Sinclair is a distribution company founded in 2003 by two ladies Robinson and Sinclair. Cyril Meidinger, who was at the stand, is the Exports Manager for Asia. The company works with over 15 wineries most of which are family owned. They include Mooiplaas which makes a very Click For Large Viewreasonably priced coffee Pinotage that could work wonders in the Indian market. They also represent excellent wineries like Waterford, Hartenburg and Rhebokskloof which I have visited twice in the last two years and whose infectiously passionate consultant winemaker Francois Naude has done wonders for the winery. I tasted the Bean Coffee Pinotage from Mooiplaas and a few wines from another winery Babylon’s Peak which were well priced and good vfm wines.

The company exports a million bottles. Each of the winery they represent makes 50,000 to 500,000 bottles with an exception or two. Their main markets are Germany (20%), China (15%), UK (15%) and USA (10%). For details, contact or visit their website

Click For Large ViewAnura Vineyards makes 1.1 million bottles and Emil Kanstinger; the export manager was pouring. He is highly optimistic about Indian market and feels they have to work hard but the potential is huge. Their wines are named after musical terms like Legato, arpeggio (broken string) etc because the son of the owner has studied music and connects music with wines. They also make a range of labels; the Pinotage 2013 was an excellent example. For more details visit or contact him at

Click For Large ViewVan Loveren markets Bayede, the only South African wine to be endorsed by South African royalty from the Zulu royal family. I had met Gavin Whittaker, the Asia Sales Manager at my house a few years ago. Two wines I tasted were of very high quality and though a bit expensive, these were the best value for money wines, especially Pinotage. These are excellent wines for on-trade and connoisseurs who appreciate the quality and still will find it affordable.

For details, visit or contact Gavin at

Spier Wine Farm is the most visible farm within South Africa and the outside world. Established in 1692, it is one of the oldest wineries in South Africa and being on the main road from Stellenbosch to Raimundo winery where I have been judge continuously for two editions of Michelangelo international wine Click For Large Viewcompetitions recently, it has been visible twice a day. Built in the old South African charming architectural style, it is highly impressive for wine tourism and has a hotel, conference and wedding facilities and even wine education. Henriette Jacobs, Sales Manager for Spier was showcasing the wines from this historical winery, just on the outskirt of Stellenbosch. For details visit or contact her at

Click For Large ViewZevenwacht was the only winery represented by an owner, Denise Johnson who was diligently pouring for anyone interested in the tasting Situated next to well-known South African wineries Jordan Winery belonging to Gary Jordan and DeMorgenzon both of which I visited last year, this is also a premium winery. Situated on the Stellenbosch Wine Route, its viticultural roots penetrate deep into the historic past of South Africa. A leader in wine tourism, Zevenwacht is one of the first Wine Estates to establish a restaurant, hotel, conference facility and Spa on the Estate and should be on the list of all importers and wine tourists to South Africa.

The wines are of classic style and have elegance. The winery respects century-old wine-making traditions and yet is boldly innovative and embraces modern technology to help make vinification of premier wines. It has grape cultivation on 120 hAs of the 450 hectare property. Zevenwacht is characterized by good quality and varied soils that showed well in the 3 different labels that were on offer at BRICS 2016.

For details visit,

It would be obvious to any visitor that these producers had made efforts to come here and participate in the exhibition, not only adding colour to the BRICS Conference but also to reach out to the Indian importers and professionals. But whether the event was not publicised properly or due to the lack of interest, the attendance was dismal. There were quite a few wines that would interest the consumer, only if they could be showcased.

It’s a pity that they did not get the right exposure. The quality of visitors was lacking. There were hardly any genuine importers to taste and the exhibitors were busy pouring for the wrong people. Hopefully they will be able to attract better crowds next time. South African wines have established a good foothold in sophisticated markets like the US and UK. With the much improved quality over the last few years, countries like India should have a good market for South African wines.

Subhash Arora

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