SPEAKER PROFILES


 

Abrie Beeslaar

Abrie was born and bred in Worcester. After matriculating he completed his BSc. Agric degree at the University of Stellenbosch in 1997. He worked Swartland Winery before joining Kanonkop Estate in 2002.  During this time he also completed 3 vintages in Germany.


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Adam Mason

Qualifying as a winemaker in 1997 (and currently making wine at Mulderbosch in addition to my own labels Yardstick and Marvelous), I have always enjoyed the cultural exchange that accompanies the celebration of wine. I believe South Africa is in a unique position to share our diverse culture in the form of a multitude of wine styles, and one of my preferred incarnations is Chenin biased white blends. Aside from making wine, I am the father of 3 formidable daughters, and married to a gifted artist, Louise Mason.


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Adi Badenhorst

Adi Badenhorst mixed his first wine at 13 and is one of a group of passionate winemakers who found their promised land in South Africa's Swartland soils. His 60 hectare farm (with 28 hectares of vines) is on the Malmesbury side of the Paardeberg Mountain.   Member of the Cape Winemakers Guild, founding member of the Swartland Independent and ever evolving Vigneron.



 


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Andrew Gunn

In 1997 Andrew Gunn, proprietor of Iona bought an isolated, run down apple farm in Elgin. An engineer by training, he identified the property as being perfect for the growing of cool climate grape varieties. With the help and appropriate training of his workers, who are now a key component in growing quality grapes, he converted the land into a premium producer of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.


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Bevan Newton Johnson

Paul Roos Gymnasium.



Stellenbosch Uni – B. Econ. alias for baie suip.



MD & eldest brother at Newton Johnson Family Vineyards since 1997.


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Braham Oberholtzer

Braham Oberholzer is currently the soil scientist of the Consultation Services department of VinPro,thewine producer organisation of South Africa.  Apart from his expertise of more than 24 years as soil scientist he also took responsibility forviticultural evaluation of vineyard blocks for competitions, arranging information/farmers days as well as leading 2 study groups for the Swartland wine region up to 2013.  He is consulting on an ongoing basis some estate vineyards like De Wetshof in Bonnievale, Ruppert farms situated in Franschhoek, Villiersdorp and Riebeeksriver.


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Bruce Jack

Bruce grew up on Surfers corner in Cape Town where he still surfs, The son of an aspirational architect/ city planner and gifted musician/ writer, it was perhap inevitable he would become a farmer. After various false but highly enjoyable starts in academia Bruce eventually washed up at Roseworthy, South Australia. here he learnt how to make wine and Japanese dumplings. Hard, but happy yards followed- vineyard and cellar work all over the world. Extraodinarily fired up and brilliantly naive he returned home in 1998 and simultaneously started a winery and a family. Anyone who has done this will tell you it is rather stupid. 


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Chris Alheit

I used to make nasty beer out of pineapple skins under my bed when I was a kid. Eventually I grew up and somehow ended up studying winemaking at Stellenbosch where I met my lovely wife Suzaan. She was then, and still is out of my league. 


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Christo le Riche

Christo has been winemaker at Le Riche since 2009.  With a BSc(Agric)(Hons) cum laude in viticulture he enjoys being at the cutting edge of research and integrating it into a traditional winemaking philosophy.  With international experience in some of the famous wineries of Napa valley and Bordeaux, he strives to further unravel the complexity of Stellenbosch Cabernet terroir and to express this in the wine he makes.


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Conrad Vlok

An avid nature lover, Conrad has been part of the Strandveld Vineyards winemaking team for the past 11 years, enjoying the diversity of his vocation which has earned him ample local and international acclaim. 



His interest in winemaking took root as a teenager, experimenting with fruit fermentation processes. After matriculating at Durbanville High School in 1984 and completing his 2-year military training, Conrad chose the great outdoors over spending time behind a desk and began his studies at Elsenburg Agricultural College. He obtained his diploma in Viticulture and Oenology in 1989. 



 



 


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Dr Winifred Bowman

I am a qualified physiotherapist, biomedical scientist and obtained a PhD in Education (Didactics). In my non-wine occupation I am an industry consultant and lecturer at Stellenbosch University in Occupational Health (Ergonomics) and Quality Improvement Management.



I am passionate about South African Wine! 


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Eben Sadie

I have been producing wines since 1994 and intent to do so for quite some time still. Owner and producer of the Sadie Family Wines in the Swartland region. Policy: The land we farm today we are borrowing from our children.


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Francois van Zyl

Born in Robertson where he finished his matric year in 1993. He studied at Elsenburg Agricultural College for 3 years. After being the top student and winning the KWV award for the viticultural student of the year, he was selected as one of the ten students to be trained as winemakers. After the completion of his studies he went to France for 4 weeks, touring all the major wine regions. Stints at Valserrano (Bodega de la Marquesa) and Bagordi ( both Rioja, Spain) followed in 2001. Gaining very good experience working in Bagordi, one of the best organic producers in Rioja. This was followed by  seasons in Pomerol (Chateau Bonalgue, and Clos du Closher), on the left bank and Serbia.


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Heinrich Kulsen

When Heinrich Kulsen (24) was considering his options after school, he couldn't decide between a career in drama or chemistry so he chose both by becoming a winemaker. "In this job, you can direct nature up to a point, but then it is out of your hands. That's pretty humbling and there's plenty drama in knowing that," he explains.


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Hennie Heymans

Hennie Heymans is the Managing Director for South Africa DHL Express.



Heymans, who joined DHL Express thirteen years ago, was in his previous position responsible for the Central Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands (CENIO) region. In his role as MD, this supply chain professional and international shipping specialist looks after the South African business division and ensures that the region lives up to the brand’s global reputation and service standards. 


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Higgo Jacobs

Hailing from Calitzdorp, Port wine capital of South Africa, Higgo was lured to the Cape by the beauty of the winelands, along with an ambition to become a lawyer. Although graduating from the University of Stellenbosch with a law degree in 2002, Higgo was constantly taking on wine roles with local vineyards, spending nine years on either side of the cellar door: first making wine, then marketing and exporting it.


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James Downes

Born and raised in the Elgin Valley, James planted his vineyards back in 2000 and the first wines were released in 2008. He has worked vintages in Burgundy in France, Chimbaronga in Chile and Napa in the USA. James has a reputation as being one of the best growers of Pinot Noir in South Africa and has supplied grapes to many of the top Pinot Noir brands over the years. James is passionate about viticulture and the challenges in applying different vineyard practices in order to achieve premium Pinot Noir. As we all know great Pinot Noir is made in the vineyard.


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Jeremy Walker

Jeremy Walker’s first winemaking job was at Bertrams Wines in Devon Valley, Stellenbosch. He completed a B.Sc. degree in Viticulture & Oenology at Stellenbosch University in 1977 and joined Bertrams for the 1978 vintage. After a few vintages at Bertrams he travelled to Germany and France to get some experience in Europe. On his return to SA, he spent a year at UCT’s Business School but the MBA degree did not open any doors for him in the wine industry. It was only six years later – in 1986 - that Jeremy got back into winemaking by helping a friend, Seymour Pritchard, to establish a winery at Clos Malverne in Devon Valley, Stellenbosch. After 6 vintages at Clos Malverne, Jeremy decided to establish his own winery at the family property, Grangehurst, on the slopes of the Helderberg, Stellenbosch.



 


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Johan Joubert

Johan’s love for winemaking started at an early age under the guidance of his father on their family wine farm on the banks of the Breede River. Armed with an insatiable passion for winemaking he completed his studies at Elsenberg Agricultural College and soon proved to be one of South Africa’s, if not the world’s, most promising young winemakers. Johan was the youngest winemaker to win the coveted General Smuts Trophy and was also awarded the Robert Mondavi Trophy for International Winemaker of the Year in 2001 at the IWSC. 


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Johan Reyneke

Matriculated Groote Schuur high school in 1988. Completed BA (Hons) Philosophy 2002. Working and travelling the USA in 1993. Started working as a farm labourer in 1994. Completed farm labourer viticultural course(s) at Kromme Rhee 1994-1996. Studied environmental ethics (MPhil) at the same time. Made the first Reyneke wine 1998. Converted to organic and biodynamic agriculture 2000 till present. Happily married to Mila with two beautiful daughters Isabella and Tallulah. Loves surfing and karate.


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Marelise Niemann

I was born in the small town of Grabouw, in the Elgin valley, and studied wine at Stellenbosch University between 2002 and 2005.  I did two internships while and after studying at De Toren and Hartenberg. In 2006 I did the 1st of my many vintages harvesting overseas, working as a cellar assistant in Napa (California)for 6 months.


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Matome Mbatha
Matome joined Wines of South Africa in 2008 after 9 years of Globetrotting as a flight steward at South Africa Airways and 1 year stint at ABSA International Trade Bureau where he worked as an export consultant assisting South African businesses in different sectors to expand and gain access to the African continent. Here at WOSA, as Market Manager for South Americas & Africa, he brings passion for advancing the South African wine visibility and presence in emerging markets.

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Michael Jordaan

Michael Jordaan, Venture Capitalist and wine enthusiast stepped down as CEO of First National Bank, one of SA’s largest banks with a customer base of nearly nine million, last year to pursue his passion for entrepreneurship.


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Minister Alan Winde
Alan Winde is the Western Cape Minister of Economic Opportunities.
“The Western Cape Government believes that economic growth is the foundation of all successful development, that growth is driven primarily by private sector business, and that the role of the state is to create and maintain an enabling environment for business and to provide demand-led, private sector driven support for growth sectors, industries and businesses.

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Mr Analjit Singh
Mr Analjit Singh is the Founder Chairman of Max India Limited, with interests in life insurance (Max Life), health care (Max Healthcare), health insurance (Max Bupa) and senior living (Antara). Max India Group is renowned for service excellence and has successful joint ventures with some of the pre-eminent firms of the world, including Mitsui Sumitomo of Japan, Life Healthcare of South Africa and Bupa Plc of the United Kingdom. Earlier partners include New York Life Insurance Company, Hutchison Whampoa, Motorola and Lockheed Martin.

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Nico Spreeth

CEO:  Vititec (Pty) Ltd        



                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        


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Pemla Makanda

Pemla was born and raised in the friendly city, Port Elizabeth where she has attended the Russel Rhode Technical College and studied Electrical Engineering. During her time as a student she worked part-time at the Boardwalk casino and super sport bar. She moved to Cape Town in 2007 where she first worked in the property industry. Whenever a property was sold it was celebrated and it was during these celebrations that Pemla has tasted her first wine, a Chardonnay she recalls. This talented young lady also did paralegal, but after a reality check, she realised that people and sales is what makes her tick. She saw a job add at the One & Only as a hostess and immediately applied, unfortunately the job was already taken, however they have offered her a waitressing job which she gladly accepted. Not long before she was voted as best waitress by the guests and her colleagues. Now she has already successfully completed WSET level 1 and has a great appreciation of Pinot Noir. She would love to become a sommelier, sales rep or even sales manager and being the best in what she does.


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Phelisa Moni

I'm Phelisa Moni from Paarl a 25year old graduate from Pinotage Youth Development Academy currently working at Spice Route Wine Estate as the wine host, after I passed my matric I couldn't further my studies due to financial challenges I had to look for some kind of job.


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Pieter Ferreira

Growing up in Durban as a ‘surfer dude’, Pieter ‘Bubbles’ Ferreira narrowly escaped entering dentistry after completing microbiology and plant science studies at the University of Pretoria. Instead, to the delight of partygoers and presidents around the world today, he sank his teeth into a winemaking career that gives much cause for celebration with some premium-quality bubbly.


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Praisy Dlamini

The talented and passionate Praisy Dlamini, assistant winemaker for Zonnebloem wines at Adam Tas, Distell on the outskirts of the Stellenbosch, started her winemaking career when she enrolled at Elsenburg for a B. Agric degree in Cellar Technology (Viticulture and Oenology).


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Richard Kershaw

Born and raised in the UK, Richard enjoyed a successful career as a chef before finding wine. After travelling extensively, he arrived in South Africa in 1999 and by 2009 was Group Winemaker of Mulderbosch and Kanu.


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Rosa Kruger

Rosa Kruger is a vineyard manager who is passionate about the preservation of the old vineyards of South Africa. She has traveled extensively over the last 15 years to some of the best vineyards (and tasting their wines) in the world. Rosa works closely with various winemakers in matching variety to site. She then also manages these vineyards in close relationship with the farmers of the land. 


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Siobhan Thompson
Siobhan is the CEO of Wines of South Africa. Previously she was Distell's Global head of marketing on various portfolios including Brandy, International Whisky and Liqueurs which included Distell flagship Global brand, Amarula

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Stephan Joubert

As DGB group viticulturist Stephan Joubert is responsible for ensuring the award winning winemaking team is supplied with grapes of exceptional quality. In managing all grower relations and grape buying throughout the Western Cape, he is accountable for all logistics of grape intake ensuring all the grapes are picked at optimum ripeness.


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Trizanne Barnard
After graduating from Stellenbosch University with a degree in viticulture and oenology, I worked multiple vintages in Australia, France and Portugal. I then returned to home ground and joined the winemaking team at Klein Constantia. In 2004 I was offered the opportunity of starting Anwilka wines in conjunction with Klein Constantia role-players and Bordeaux winemakers.

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Tyrrel Myburgh

Tyrrel Myburgh is a 5th-generation farmer at Joostenberg Wines in the Paarl region of South Africa. He is a co-owner at Joostenberg and manages the vineyards and winery. In addition to his responsibilities at Joostenberg he is a founding partner and cellarmaster at MAN Family Wines.He was born  (1971) in the Cape and received tertiary qualifications from both Stellenbosch University and Elsenburg Agricultural College.He is passionate about organic viticulture.



 


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Wynand Grobler

Wynand completed his BSc Oenology from Stellenbosch University afterwhich he worked as assistant winemaker at Ernie Els and Rust en Vrede. Wynand has done harvests in Burgundy, Austria and the South of France. He was appointed as Winemaker at Rickety Bridge in 2007 where he discovered his passion for Franschhoek Semillon. Wynand works very closely with Basil Landau in his Semillon Vineyard which was planted in 1905 and makes two Semillons from this Vineyard, as well as Paulina’s Reserve Semillon.


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