Winemakers Wheeling in the Isles

Health centres and gyms throughout the Cape winelands have been inundated by winemakers requesting training in the art of doing cartwheels. This strange phenomenon seems to be a backlash from the recent Swartland Revolution held in the Swartland Winelands where one of the week-end’s highlights was a cartwheel performance by vinous wunderkind Eben Sadie.

During a Swartland Revolution gig entitled “The Eben and Adi Show”, the dark and athletic Sadie amazed the audience with three graceful cartwheels, thereby contributing a physical manifestation to his well-known passion for wine. The cartwheels stunned the crowd and led to a deluge of tweets and blog-posts.

“I’ve got to get into the act with these cartwheels before everyone does,” one Helderberg winemaker said as he signed up at the Virgin Active in Somerset-West. “That bloody Eben has to be first with everything. His well-publicised cartwheeling has done more to promote the Swartland than a year’s supply of Tim James blogging. But if I can get wheeling by harvest, I’m also going to host a tasting to rock the socks.”

Personal instructors at various gyms and health centres confirmed the increased demand for training in physical contortions by wine makers. “Like, now and again a winemaker will pop in for a game of squash, hey,” said Wilf Rosenchoon, personal trainer at the Van der Stel Sports Centre in Stellenbosch. “But after what that guy did in the Swartland I’ve had winemakers coming to me wanting to learn how to do cartwheels, hand-stands, flic-flacks and the odd Cossack dance routine. If it goes on like this, wine launches and tastings are never going to be the same!”

Insiders say that wine behemoths Distell and the KWV are especially concerned at the publicity and interest Sadie’s antics have generated. A winemaker training camp in conjunction with the Hottentots Holland Players Amateur Dramatic Society is being planned by Distell’s wine division to add some zest to wine-tastings and media launches.

“We have to keep looking at ways to improve our marketing offerings,” a corporate PR said. “Long lunches with lamb shanks and rocket-infused mash might not always be the best way of attracting attention to your brand. A set of tumble-turns or one-handed push-ups from the winemaker might just be the trick. It’s very competitive out there, and we are going to have to pull out all stops.”

-,,,,,,,,, Joe Turner

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