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I write a weekly column on wine and was the restaurant critic for the Independent and National News newspapers for 5 years and continues to write regular articles for numerous magazines on a freelance basis.
I'm a contributor to the Tom Stevenson publications " World Champagnes", "Sothebyís World Wine Encyclopedia" , the Hugh Johnson " Wine Companion " and Jancis Robinsonís "Oxford Companion to Wine". He contributed to the annual John Platter South African Wine Guide for several years.
I wrote and presented, " Friendship and Wine " on ZBC radio for 6 years and wrote and presented the 13 week TV series on ZBCTV entitled " Of Wine and Friendship".
I have been elected to the Confrerie des Chevaliers du Tastevin, of Burgundy, to the South African Association of Wine Writers, the International Federation of Wine and Spirit Journalists and to the Circle of Wine Writers (International). He holds the Certificate in Judging of Wine issued by the Wine and Spirit Trust of South Africa and has been a Guest Judge at the South African National Wine Show (Veritas Awards).
I have consulted in the selection, blending and maturation of red and white wines for 10 years and has also given professional advice in regard to wine marketing to numerous importers and producers.
Currently living in Stellenbosch, in the Cape, I'm a lecturer at all levels for the Cape Wine Academy, Contributing Editor of World Wine Trade magazine based in Spain and is columnist for " Out of Africa International" which is published both in England and in Australia. He is also a contributor to Grape Magazine, Cape Review and Cape Odyssey.
My eMail address is email@example.com
The first wines were produced in 1965. They were of very dubious quality with no continuity and some strange grape varieties like Jacques, Issor and Farrazza were planted! These vines are almost all gone now and imported "noble" varieties are planted throughout Zimbabwe. The average yield is 9 tonnes per hectare.
Over the last decade tremendous progress has been made. Irrigation, cold fermentation, modern equipment and winemakers trained overseas in Germany, Australia and South Africa and the use of "flying winemaker" consultants have brought about a complete change in quality.
The winemaker at Mukuyu is Samuel Pfidzayi who was trained by Achim Von Arnim in South Africa and at the Roseworthy Wine Institute in Australia. The Cellar Manager at Mukuyu is Berthold Seitz, trained at the Geisenheim Institute in Germany. Philip Elliot is the Zimbabwean trained winemaker at Stapleford and the use of Clive Hartnell in a "flying" capacity adds to the standards. Clive is a New Zealander and was an instructor at Roseworthy, he now does a vintage in South Africa, Hungary and Zimbabwe every year.
Zimbabwe lies on the same line of latitude as much of Bolivia and Southern Brazil and has Summer rains, largely from November to April, with February being the wettest month, generally. The harvest is taken in from November-January and moisture can therefore be a real problem. Sunlight is present in abundance, however, with average daily sunshine of 8 hours. Mean annual temperatures of about 18.8 degrees C and an average of 27.5 days of frost between June and August all serve to keep the growers on their toes. The prevailing wind is from the East, blowing off the warm Madagascan coast.
Zimbabwean wines have won over 100 Silver and Bronze medals at the International Wine and Spirit Competition in London over the last 13 years. Including 2 Silver and 6 Bronze in 1996. The wines have been accepted as being of outstanding value and exports to England will commence shortly.
Symphony Range: Z$ 21-27
Also produce fruit coolers, and a very drinkable Port.
P.O. Box 1813, Harare. T: (9-263-4) 620410/9 F: 620429/620431.
Winery Tours by appointment, picnic and braai area but no food available.
Private Cellar Range: Z$ 25-28
P.O. Box 2346 Harare. T: (9-263-4) 308351, 302119, 303823 F: 303083.