The Stellenbosch Vineyards marketing team sat down and took time to get to get to know our winemaking team. Petri de Beer, winemaker, joined Stellenbosch Vineyards in 2015.
How many years have you been in the wine industry? 2020 represents my 8th year in the industry as a winemaker.
Why did you decide to become a winemaker?
It is one of the few industries that intertwines science and art to such a degree where you need both to flourish. For all the intricacies of the biological systems that we work with and chemical interactions you have to be aware of the final touch that makes a wine great, comes from the inspiration and talent of the winemaker.
Your proudest moment while being a winemaker?
Being able to launch the first Therona cultivar wine in South Africa (and the world). It represented the culmination of 3 years of hard work and research. Hopefully, it is only the start for the many undiscovered South African wine cultivars.
Most memorable harvest and why?
My first harvest, just the excitement of working in a cellar for the first time and doing what you love. I remember standing alone in the cellar well past midnight one evening and thinking ‘’Wow I am getting paid to make wine, this is awesome.’’
What stood out for you in the 2020 harvest?
It started a bit earlier than expected and as a happy bonus was larger than expected! We also had no cloudy and cold days during harvest which I believe is a good sign for the 2020 red wines.
How do you relax in your off time?
I am either in the garden or in the kitchen trying new recipes.
What career would you have chosen, if not winemaking?
I would probably be a farmer, I just love nature and being outdoors.
What is your favorite dish and what SV wine would you be enjoying it?
Nothing goes better with a slow-roasted lamb rib on the braai than a glass of Stellenbosch Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon.
Do you prefer cork or screwcap?
I just love the sound of a cork being pulled out of a bottle of wine!
What is your winemaking goal for the future?
I want to promote the indigenous cultivars of South Africa and showcase our authentic South African wine styles and terroirs. We have so much more to offer than your ordinary Bordeaux or Burgundy clones!