During February Franschhoek Wine Valley hosted four dynamic young women, who aptly referred to themselves as the Worldwine Women. This group of student friends– Alice, Louise, Alexandra and Atalante – have made it their mission to explore vineyards across the globe with the goal of analysing the emerging balance between tradition and innovation. In order to do so they work in vineyards in each of the countries that they visit so as to personally experience different production methods, traditional local skills as well as cultural environments.
Eager to experience what the valley has to offer in terms of wine production the group spent time with the women winemakers of Haut Espoir, La Bri, GlenWood Vineyards, My Wyn, Holden Manz and Anthonij Rupert Wyne.
The women say that “It was so interesting to discover a different vineyard each day, and learning from all these inspiring winemakers. During our stay we worked in the vineyards and helped the winemakers with their daily tasks. The idea was to learn about South African wines and wine making techniques and to interview winemakers to learn more about their work. In the morning, we would generally undertake a tour of the vineyard and the winemaker would tell us about the details of their wines. Then we would work in the cellar and follow it with a tasting session with the winemakers. It was so interesting to learn from the people who had made the wines. We interviewed the women winemakers we met, in order to understand how they are integrated in this sector, to learn about their role and responsibilities. We were privileged to meet some amazing women, who are determined and passionate about their careers.”
Franschhoek’s beauty certainly didn’t go unnoticed by the women. “The area is extremely peaceful and the landscapes are breath taking,” they say. “We’ve been deeply touched by the hospitality and kindness of people we met, and impressed by how well preserved the village is. Furthermore, we were surprised by the diversity of vineyards in the valley. During our time in Franschhoek we visited some vineyards using very traditional methods, some with highly mechanised operations and other ones with biodynamic operations. We believe that this diversity makes Franschhoek an even more interesting place for winemakers. Moreover, we were impressed by the wide range of grape varietals at each farm, and as a result were able to taste delicious and elegant wines with very different characteristics.”
The Worldwine Women will be continuing their travels in the next few months. Their schedule already includes planned visits to Argentina, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, China and the United States of America.
Text: Editorial Desk | Image: FWV