22 November 2016

Beyers Truter Brings Pinotage to Bordeaux

Sunday: To La Cité du Vin in Bordeaux for a Pinotage masterclass presented by Beyers Truter, owner and cellar master of Beyerskloof and Chairman of The Pinotage Association.
La Cité du Vin, Bordeaux

La Cité du Vin’s curving glass, silver and gold metallic structure is meant to symbolise wine swirling in a glass, the sinuous knots of  vine stock and the eddies of the River Garonne, which it overlooks.
Opened on 1 June 2016, it’s a cultural centre celebrating all aspects of wine. 

South Africa is the first wine region to be celebrated with a weekend of events including tastings, music and foods. South African flags were on display throughout the complex.
Discover Pinotage, an iconic South African variety’, a bilingual conference and tasting session was hosted by Beyers Truter. He was supported by students from Elsenburg Agricultural Training Institute that he’d been leading through Europe's wine lands.

Florence Maffrand (La Cite du Vin) , Beyers Truter and Elsenburg Graduates
Beyers was in a jovial mood as he introduced his passion to a mostly French audience and stretched the interpreter’s skill.

He covered the history of Cape wine and Pinotage and looked at growing making and marketing it. 
Beyers Truter at La Cite du Vin
Beyers summed up saying that Pinotage had experienced a 70% growth in its home market, is being planted in more countries and that new marketing initiatives were in the pipeline to boost the Pinotage brand. 

We finished with a tutored tastings of two wines; Mellasat White Pinotage 2015. This oak aged serious supple complex white so impressed  Beyers he plans to visit Mellasat and buy a case on his return. 

We finished with Beyerskloof Pinotage Reserve 2014 that had been poured more than an hour previously and was in perfect condition, succulent, soft and ripe with intense berry flavours.

The Elsenburg students had just heard they'd all passed their exams and had earned their degrees. I spoke with some to find their future plans. One had a position at Cederberg Winery, another at Creation Wines in the Hemel in Aarde Valley, another at his family's vineyard and others were planning on taking some time to work at wineries in the northern hemisphere. Best wishes to them all.

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