Our local brands come out tops

Make sure to add these award winners to your menu

World Titles for Producers of Bain's Cape Mountain Whisky

The James Sedgwick Distillery in Wellington, home of proudly South African Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky, and its founder distiller Andy Watts both took the world titles as Sustainable Distillery of the Year and World Whisky Brand Ambassador of the Year at the 2020 Icons of Whisky Awards held annually by Whisky Magazine in London.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic the awards were released live on social media. Beating competition from producers across the globe ranging from Scotland, America and Ireland to Australia, these distillers' awards prove that South Africa is at the forefront of whisky making. 

Andy Watts, founder distiller of Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky, says innovation has been key in the success of South African whisky.

The James Sedgwick Distillery in the Western Cape is also currently a source of distilling alcohol to support the country’s fight against the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Andy Watts, founder distiller of Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky, says innovation has been key in the success of South African whisky.

“Bain’s was launched in 2009, long before single grain whisky became a trend around the globe. My vision for this whisky was to offer consumers something truly South African made with 100% South African maize and quite uniquely double matured for a period of five years in casks previously used for the maturation of bourbon. This, together with our warm South African climate, which accelerates maturation, resulted in an exceptional, smooth whisky with extraordinary flavour and makes the whisky truly one of a kind. And in its own right, Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky has been awarded as the World’s Best Grain Whisky twice at the 2013 and 2018 World Whiskies Awards, segmenting our country’s reputation for making world-class whisky.”

The distillery, the only commercial whisky distillery in Africa, has been at the forefront of innovation with state-of-the-art equipment and ingenious sustainability projects. In addition to the recent Icons of Whisky award, the James Sedgwick Distillery was recognised with the prestigious Green Company of the Year award hosted by the BIG Awards for Business towards the end of 2019.

“Making whisky is not just about the liquid. It’s about finding ways to lessen the impact on the environment,” says Watts. “Over the years we have implemented a number of initiatives that include recycling spent grains, which are high in protein, for animal feed; treating waste water firstly through an anaerobic digester and then further through a reverse osmosis (RO) plant - the first part of the water treatment recovers methane gas, which is brought back into the process in order to reduce coal usage. The second treatment through the RO plant results in approximately 35% of the water being re-used as process water (for cooling and boilers). Collecting the CO² emanated during fermentation for use in carbonated drinks is a further initiative.”

This year's Icons of Whisky Awards has been a tremendous win for South Africa. Big Five Duty Free was awarded as the Whisky Icon - Travel Retailer of the Year and WhiskyBrother as the Whisky Icon - Single Outlet Retailer of the Year.

Twitter: @BainsWhisky #BainsMoments @TheWhiskyMaker

Roodeberg Red Wins Double Gold in Japan

Roodeberg, the legendary South African wine that has been enjoyed the world over for more than 70 years, has brought home a Double Gold medal from the 7th Sakura Japan Women’s Wine Awards 2020.

The awards are judged solely by women in Japan with a tasting panel of 560 wine industry experts, and are hailed the largest wine competition in Asia with more than 4 300 entries. Roodeberg Red was awarded top honours for the 2018 vintage.

This famous blend of classic red varieties including Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Petit Verdot and Tannat, erupts in your glass with aromatic layers of red fruit, cassis and pencil shavings enriched by warm tones of tobacco and dark chocolate. The palate is elegant and well-rounded with nuances of cedar oak and dark plums, supported by soft tannins that linger long after the last sip.

Launched in 1949, Roodeberg is a true South African original that has stood the test of time. This contemporary classic is the heart and soul of memorable moments and is best enjoyed with friends and family over a hearty roast, around the braai or with your favourite chicken dish. Visit www.roodeberg.co.za for more information about the rich heritage of this classic red blend.

Survivor Strikes a Grand Wines Hat Trick at SAWi Wine Awards

Survivor, the unbridled wine range rooted in the Swartland, has joined the ranks of South Africa’s best-performing wines in the South African Wine Index (SAWi) with no less than three contenders in the top tier Grand Wines Collection.

Survivor Reserve Pinotage with a score of 99,4 and Sauvignon Blanc on 96,2 were both awarded Platinum, while Survivor Chenin Blanc earned Grand Gold with 93,4.

This annual barometer of wine excellence recognises wines that have stood the test of time. The Wine Index is scored out of 100 and calculated according to the combined results a particular wine has achieved over numerous vintages in any of 100 different local and international wine contests. Only wines that have attained a minimum score of 93 make the cut for SAWi’s new Grand Wines Collection category spanning the last 10 years.

“Our high SAWi scores across three of our top-performing wines shows that we are on the right track with our Survivor range and strengthens our resolve to maintain our single-minded focus on a sense of place and authenticity,” says winemaker Ben Snyman.

Last year the top-scoring Survivor Reserve Pinotage won the trophy for best Pinotage at the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show.

Survivor wines are inspired by the spirited indigenous Nguni cow that stands proud on every bottle as a symbol of tenacity, exuberance and African folklore. For more information visit www.survivorwines.com

Tokara excels again at WM 10-Year-Old Wine Awards

TOKARA, the acclaimed family-owned Stellenbosch wine estate, has excelled as a top-performing cellar at the WM 10-Year-Old Wine Awards for the fourth consecutive year, with four wines breaking the venerable 90-point barrier.

Showing its prowess as a world-class producer of wines of remarkable age-ability and consistency, Tokara was ranked second-highest performer overall once again this year.

The competition, held annually under the Winemag.co.za banner to showcase age-worthy South African wines, attracted 74 entries from the 2010 vintage.

The four Tokara 2010 wines – three whites and a red – awarded 90 points or higher on the 100-point scale are two Chardonnays, the Reserve Collection and Zondernaam, and the Director’s Reserve White, all on 91 points, followed by the Director’s Reserve Red with 90.

“We pride ourselves not only on the consistency and longevity of our wines but also of our people. After 20 vintages at Tokara under his belt, our viticulturist Aidan Morton is the scientist behind our vineyards. Coupled with the youthful exuberance of Stuart Botha in the cellar, it’s a perfect match,” says Karl Lambour, Tokara's general manager.

These award-winning wines are a reflection of everything the estate stands for – refinement, elegance and balance and above all, are a true expression of place. For more information visit www.tokara.com