2023 - A Year In Review
We want to express our heartfelt gratitude on behalf of our entire team for your unwavering support throughout 2023. Your support has been instrumental in making this year one of the most successful in our history, and we are proud to share some of 2023’s highlights with you.
EVENTS & PARTNERSHIPS
Throughout the year, we forged memorable partnerships and hosted diverse events, fostering unique experiences for its patrons.
The PIWOSA Masters of Wine Event was a standout, showcasing excellence in wine culture and expertise. The event took place on top of Table Mountain where the Masters of Wine enjoyed a tasting session with all of the PIWOSA members, followed by a 5-course food and wine pairing dinner at the Ten67 Restaurant on Table Mountain.
Collaborations extended beyond wine, encompassing culinary realms as seen in the Pesto Princess Recipe Collaboration, featuring vibrant reels on De Grendel's Instagram. Further recipe alliances with Mush Kitchen, Georgia East, and Lekker Weskus added flavourful dimensions to De Grendel's culinary narrative.
The "Cooking with Wine" video series with Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen on Instagram offered an immersive exploration of pairing wine with culinary creations.
Additionally, the celebration of Mother’s Day alongside Adene’s Flowers added a touch of elegance, harmonising wine and floral delights for a special occasion.
These events and partnerships epitomise our commitment to enriching experiences beyond mere tastings, creating moments that linger in the hearts of their guests.
Our long-standing commitment to environmental conservation and sustainable farming has been recognised with Conservation Champion status by the WWF, the world’s leading independent conservation organisation. Becoming a WWF Conservation Champion recognises our respect for and commitment to nature and the environment developed over four generations of the Graaff family’s stewardship of De Grendel.
For Earth Day, we collaborated with The Beach Co-Op and The Litterboom Project. R3 of every bottle of wine sold during April were donated to these organisations to help keep plastic out of our oceans. The Beach Co-Op’s beach clean-up initiatives have cleared 7 tons of plastic since 2015. The Litterboom is an innovative method of intercepting the pollution at source has prevented over 500 tons of plastic from reaching the ocean over the past few years.
Another Earth Day collaborative project was with renowned environmental artist Janet Ormond. Janet’s sculpture was made entirely from ocean plastic collected off the shores of South Africa, is a powerful statement about the beauty and fragility of our planet, and the urgent need to take action to protect it. The sculpture artwork features important species of plants found in the Renosterveld, a unique and valuable ecosystem that is home to many endemic species. The centrepiece is a bottle of De Grendel wine, amidst the rich fauna and flora that surrounds us.
AWARDS & RATINGS
This year we excelled in numerous global wine competitions, a testament to Cellar Master Charles Hopkins and his team’s unwavering commitment to produce only the best of the best.
The annual Tim Atkin SA Report has once again recognised De Grendel's dedication to producing exceptional wines that reflect the unique terroir of the Ceres Plateau, shining the spotlight on all three wines in De Grendel’s Op Die Berg range. No less than 5 wines scored 90+ ratings in the 2023 Tim Atkin SA Report.
The esteemed Koetshuis Sauvignon Blanc 2022 has achieved a prestigious accolade as a winner in the highly competitive annual FNB Sauvignon Blanc SA Top 10 Competition.
Our team also celebrated an exceptional triumph at the prestigious Michelangelo International Wine & Spirit Competition. Known for recognizing excellence in the global wine and spirit industry, Michelangelo bestowed De Grendel wine three esteemed medals, including two Double Gold and one Gold Medal.
In May we celebrated a rare double – two Top 10 places in the Prescient Winemag Shiraz Report, for two distinctive Shiraz wines from two very different growing areas – De Grendel Op Die Berg Syrah 2021 and Elim Shiraz 2020.
In the Winemag 10-Year-Old Wine Report, we excelled for the fourth consecutive year. This time, a Top 10 place was awarded to De Grendel Shiraz 2013.
This year, no less than 6 wines scored 90+ points in the annual international James Suckling SA Report, a testament of our world-class wines being recognized internationally.
Back on home soil, we were awarded two prestigious Double Gold Medals and a well-deserved Gold Medal by Veritas for our Koetshuis Sauvignon Blanc, Op Die Berg Pinot Noir 2022, and Rubaiyat 2028 respectively.
We tantalised taste buds with a sumptuous array of recipes, each meticulously curated to elevate dining experiences.
The Schnitzel Holstein with Op Die Berg Chardonnay showcased a harmonious marriage of flavours, where the delicate nuances of the Chardonnay complemented the dish's richness.
Simultaneously, the Chilli Con Carne with De Grendel Merlot brought together the robust essence of Merlot, infusing depth into the hearty chili.
The Air Fryer Basil & Parmesan Arancini offered a delightful twist, highlighting a fusion of basil and Parmesan while embracing modern cooking techniques.
In another culinary venture, the Mushroom Ragu Pappardelle unveiled a savoury symphony of earthy flavours, exemplifying the exquisite fusion of pasta and mushroom.
Lastly, the Cider Batter Fish and Chips with De Grendel Sauvignon Blanc presented a delectable coupling where the crispness of the dish was complemented by the Sauvignon Blanc's refreshing notes, creating a harmonious palate experience.
These recipes, found on our website, is part of our commitment to culinary excellence, inviting patrons to explore and savour a concerto of flavours heightened by thoughtful wine pairings.
Our social media landscape witnessed remarkable engagement thanks to Cellar Master Charles Hopkins, whose TikTok presence soared, amassing over 700,000 views for his Dries Roelvink impersonation. This captivating content resonated widely, offering a glimpse into the De Grendel world of food and wine.
Moreover, the winery’s strategic use of reels on Instagram highlighted the exciting 'taste off' sessions between Hopkins and Winemaker Morgan Steyn, a creative approach that sparked immense enthusiasm among followers. The reels, showcasing the friendly yet competitive spirit between the experts, garnered significant attention and positive feedback from the audience, cementing De Grendel's reputation as a dynamic and engaging presence in the digital sphere.
In 2023, De Grendel embarked on a global journey, championing our exceptional wines across continents, nurturing relationships with our international agents and wine importers.
Morgan graced the MMI Big Taste 2023 Wine Event in Dubai, where the industry's focus on sustainability was celebrated under the theme "A Toast to a Sustainable Future." His travels also took him to Germany, expanding our reach and sharing the story behind our wines.
Meanwhile, Righard traversed Namibia, Switzerland, Zimbabwe, and Lesotho, fostering connections and sharing our wine's unique essence with diverse cultures.
De Villiers journeyed through the USA, Canada, France, and the UK, with our esteemed Syrah earning a coveted spot at Waitrose, showcased proudly at the Waitrose Drinks Festival in November.
Not to be outdone, Charles embarked on a visit to Mauritius, further extending our global footprint and introducing the allure of De Grendel wines to international audiences.
These travels underscore our commitment to sharing our passion for wine on a global stage while fostering enduring partnerships worldwide.
Your passion, support, and commitment have been the driving force behind these achievements and initiatives, and we are truly fortunate to have you as friends of De Grendel.
During this joyous season, we extend our warmest wishes to all friends of De Grendel. May you stay safe on the roads, treasure your loved ones, and embrace the valuable gift of life. We enthusiastically await an even brighter 2024 and hope for the pleasure of welcoming you to De Grendel soon.
De Villiers Graaff