Swartland Shall Rule
After its rapid rise to ascendency of late and elevated profile, the Swartland becomes the official headquarter of the South African wine industry. Industry bodies such as VinPro, SAWIS and WineTech relocate from Paarl to Riebeeck-Kasteel where they report to Swartland Revolutionary Commandos Eben Sadie, Adi Badenhorst and Chris Mullineux. Only wine made from unirrigated bushvines older than 65 years and which is wild-fermented can be certified as Proudly South African.
WineX is now held in the Malmesbury Town Hall in tandem with the Koringberg Potjiekos Exhibition, while the annual Veritas Wine Awards relocates from the Cape Town Convention Centre to Muisbosskerm Beach Restaurant outside Lambert’s Bay.
Local Market Grows
With all alcohol advertising now banned by the government, South African wine consumption rapidly rises to 123 litres per person per year as wine is promoted via guerrilla marketing methods. At the helm of this activity is Anel Grobler and Jan Laubscher of www.spitorswallow.co.za whose aggressive on-line marketing activities makes them the most powerful players in the wine industry. Having also relocated to the Swartland (obviously), Anel and Jan run a powerful outfit committed to promoting wine through the channels of facebook, twitter and various blogs. Their dynamic team includes Michael Fridjhon as Assistant Sponsorship Co-ordinator and Tim James as head of Tasting Glass Selection.
South African Breweries and liquor company Brand House attempt buy-outs of www.spitorswallow.co.za, but local businessman Jannie Mouton’s R3bn stake in the company means they are not interested in any gatsak or broekskeur arrangement.
Despite a slight change in name to Bulk Wines of South Africa (Bwosa), the generic marketing body continues to do sterling work in light of the unfavourable exchange rate where the Rand/Dollar exchange has hit 3.45/1. Bwosa reports stunning export growths of 1 348% and 1,198% to Tristan de Cunha and Macedonia respectively.
American dynamo politician Sarah Palin opens the First South African Bulk Wine Fair in Anchorage where she enthrals attendees with her pairing of moose burgers and stewed grizzly bear paw with Malmesbury Shiraz and Piketberg Tannat.
Bwosa’s publishing interests continue to grow. Having procured the rights to publish the latest outdoor cookery books by Jamie Olivier (Jamie’s Burning) and Anthony Bourdain (Charcoal Confidential), Bwosa enter the profitable realm of fiction publishing. Wilbur Smith, Salman Rushdie and Zadie Smith all publish under the Bwosa title, while a first edition of Braai Masters of the Cape Winelands signed by Bwosa Culinary Consultant Andr+¬ Morgenthal is auctioned for ?+¦?????+¦-ú?+¦+ª13,567 at the maiden Hyde Park Barbecue Rally.
Balkan wine historian Dusan Jelic unearths a Serbian document wherein the origin of South African Pinotage is refuted. According to the document which dates back to Serbia’s Nemanjic Dynasty from between the 12th and 15th centuries, Pinot Noir and Hermitage vines were cross-pollinated on the slobes of Fruska Gora ?+¦-+???+¦-ú?-¦?+¦-ú?+¦+¦ 80km from Belgrade ?+¦-+???+¦-ú?-¦?+¦-ú?+¦+¦ as far back as 1345. Despite opinions to the contrary by the South African Pinotage Association, 1345 is in fact earlier than 1925, the date the Pinotage vine was seemingly “invented” by Professor Abraham Perold after him crossing Pinot Noir with Hermitage in Stellenbosch, South Africa.
Faced by the thought of Pinotage losing its status as South Africa’s most famous indigenous grape variety, the Pinotage Association goes on a charm offensive, inducting various Serbian wine makers into the newly established Pinotage Brotherhood, with Jelic serving as its honorary President. The Bank of Belgrade joins Absa as headline sponsors of the Top Pinotage Awards, which are extended from 10 to 15 to include Baltic Pinotage wines.
The Top 15 Awards Ceremony now alternates between the Western Cape and Belgrade, with South African Pinotage supremos Beyers Truter and Duimpie Bayly being inducted into the Serbian Folk Dancing Hall of Fame after their energetic displays during the inaugural Belgrade event. Their prizes, two prime Serbian shaggy mountain goats, are confiscated at airport customs upon their return to South Africa.
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