Hello Again from Vondeling
As I write to you, it is the most beautiful spring day and everything is budding and blooming like crazy. It is a balmy 26C, but winter is officially over and the rainfall has been miserable. We have had another busy month. September is traditionally a hectic time for sales and marketing. Here in South Africa Hotels and restaurants are gearing up for summer and tourist season. And in Europe, summer holidays are over, schools are starting and everyone is going back to work….most importantly wine buyers!
Usually by the 1st July the dam is overflowing. We can’t expect any significant rainfall going forward for the rest of the year. I attended the Berg River irrigation scheme meeting last Wednesday and “the powers that be” (attended by approximately 300 local farmers) explained our brutal situation. We are only to receive 30% of our normal water allocation from the Berg River irrigation scheme (at the most) and wine farmers were encouraged to sell their water rights for this year to fruit farmers who need the water desperately. Veggie farmers even more.
Meanwhile I travelled to Amsterdam, Stockholm and Frankfurt for Tastings and Sales meeting with prospective buyers and Matt travelled to London for similar events in Yorkshire, Berkshire and Kent finished off by a tremendous lunch at the Spectator Magazine in their panelled dining room just down the road from Buckingham Palace. Matthew presented 7 Vondeling wines and the lunch was a resounding success. Also on the home front , we had 4 more weddings filling the air with laughter and joy. This Tuesday, we had another visit from 16 members of the Royal Horticultural Society for a Vineyard walk followed by a wine tasting and lunch. They were very excited to have seen the incredibly rare Babiana Noctiflora in full bloom and took countless photographs.
Lastly, Bridget and I were lucky enough to attend the Nederburg Auction last Saturday. The day before we had David Elswood for lunch here on Vondeling who was the Auctioneer. David is the chief wine auctioneer for Christie’s in London and he told us some amazing stories about priceless wines being discovered in cellars all over the world and then being auctioned. Vondeling had 3 different wines on auction (Chardonnay 2009, Babiana 2011 and Babiana 2013) All sold very well and it really was a fantastic event.
Finally if you can get out to the Voor Paardeberg in the next few weeks I can highly recommend it. We have some fantastic wines for sale and Spring has made everything at Vondeling idyllic.