12 June 2007

Pinotage to the Rescue

Pinotage not only takes a major part in turning around the recent decline in South African wine sales in the UK, but also plays a vital role in rescuing a marriage.

Exports of Pinotage wines from South Africa to the UK are up by 46% in the period January -April 2007 compared with the same period last year. South Africa wine exports overall increased by 8%, reversing a previous decline. While the major SA brand in the UK (Kumala) still suffers falling sales, the second (Namaqua) and third (First Cape) largest brands are doing well, with First Cape - who market a varietal Pinotage - seeing a 114% increase in sales. And no doubt the recent promotions on Stormhoek and Beyerskloof have also helped. (Information from Harpers )

Meanwhile an anonymous blogger is having problems with her husband who she is "beginning to suspect may be on the verge of a mid-life crisis. "

She writes "Our finances preclude the purchase of that typical symbol of mid-life crisis - a ‘male meno-Porsche’ so instead he has bought a pair of in-line skates.

To be fair, as well as being an all round Boy Scout, H has always been a good skater – a sort of Ray Mears on wheels. He used to rollerblade to work when he was young and carefree, and was therefore a frequent recipient of abuse from motorists, cyclists and pedestrians alike.

However this weekend, he returned from a skating trip with more of a glow than usual. Apparently, a car full of teenage girls had beeped their car horn and waved at him as he skated along. All fairly innocent, you might think, but no - he has been down at the gym this morning, clearly convinced that his body is now a temple at which young women will come and worship. Bless!

More worryingly, he has declared his intention to abstain from drinking wine. Surely such self-delusion has its limits? Clearly some action needs to be taken to avoid irreparable damage to our marriage. Therefore, in an attempt to lure him once again with my oenophile charms, I have uncorked a Tesco Finest Beyers Truter Pinotage (£7.99). I am certain that the spicy blackberry flavour will convince him of the error of his ways. How could he fail to realise that a lithe limbed lovely offering him a swig of her alcopop cannot compare with the delights of drinking decent red wine? Even if it does mean sharing it with a woman whose teeth are gradually turning blue."


  1. Hi Peter - you will be pleased to know that the Beyers Truter worked its irresistible magic. My husband has (quite sensibly) realised that life is too short to be spent on a quest for the 'body beautiful' and has opted to spend his evenings drinking decent red wine with me. I think I need to get some more of that excellent Beyers Truter - it will be a lot cheaper than divorce lawyers.

  2. Hi Peter - on a different note:

    Tomorrow I am going to the 2007 Pinotage Vintage Tasting held by the Pinotage Association. Will I be seeing you there????

    It is @ Allée Bleue...

  3. Hi Winefly -- no, I'm in England. I'd like to hear what you think of the 2007 vintage.

    Hi DM -- lucky lucky hubby :)

  4. what do you think has created this complete re look at Pinotage as the 'icon' wine of south africa.

    writers around the world have given it a bad rap for some time now and even folks at Wine magazine have given it a bad rap - now all of a sudden they are changing their tune.

    Has the quality got better? Can we thank Stormhoek? The Pinotage Club? Wine Library TV?

    Im just wondering how - ina space of a year - respectable wine writers can go from saying that Pinotage is an overall dud to now giving it the thumbs up as having so much potential?

  5. Good question, Cru Master.

    The quality of Pinotage wines has increased dramatically, that is indisputable. But why wine writers are changing their mind, who knows. Build it up, knock it down, then build it up again. Interesting to note that the 'great white hope' :) Sauvignon Blanc is now starting to attract criticism.

    What is really important, I think, is not so much what wine writers are saying but what people are paying their own money for. Sales of Pinotage are increasing -- theres a whole new generation of wine drinkers for whom its just another variety. They have no historical hangups.