31 March 2008

Bertus Fourie leaves KWV for VdV

Bertus Fourie
Bertus Fourie leaves KWV today to take up the position of managing director at Val de Vie Wines from 1 May 2008. Bertus, who gained the nickname 'Starbucks' in appreciation of his pioneering the coffee and chocolate Pinotage when he was winemaker at Diemersfontein, joined KWV in 2005 as Senior Winemaker and launched KWV's Cafe Culture - a coffee and chocolate Pinotage - last year.

Bertus's younger brother, Martin Fourie, is winemaker at Val de Vie and the two are looking forward to working together.

Val de Vie is a lifestyle residential estate with a strong focus on wine and polo. Most of the existing vineyards have been replanted with Rhone varieties as these are considered best suited to the area. The cellar building dates from 1825 and houses a 100-ton cellar solely for the Rhone varieties. But plans for a bigger Pinotage-only cellar facility are underway.

Martin Venter, developer of Val de Vie Lifestyle Estate, said "We view the appointment of Bertus Fourie as managing director of Val de Vie Wines (Pty) Ltd as an important part of the implementation of our marketing and branding strategy for Val de Vie Wines that coincides with the lifestyle brand of Val de Vie Lifestyle Estate. Interestingly, it was the Coffee-style Pinotage that originally sparked our friendship. It is the friendliest wine that I have ever enjoyed, and all my friends and colleagues love it as well. Like Bertus said at several occasions: 'Selling wine is all about relationships', and what a better way to start any relationship than with this wine."

So will there be a Val de Vie mocha Pinotage? Wait and see......

The Pinotage Club met Bertus Fourie last month, click here for the report.

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