Trade businesses and wine enthusiasts gathered to savour great tasting wines at the Wines of South Africa Grand Tasting event held to commemorate Nelson Mandela Day at the Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos on Saturday July 18th, 2015.
The event afforded guests the opportunity to enjoy new wine releases, lively music and a feast of finger-licking canapés, while networking and meeting with people of great minds. The experience was comparable to any wine tasting event in the world. The tasting event is a prelude to the Cape Wines showcase and fair in Cape Town, South Africa later in the year.
Speaking at the event, South African Consul-General in Nigeria, Ambassador Mokgethi Monaisa, remarked that, “This is indeed a great day and we are happy to celebrate Nelson Mandela this way. Today is his birthday. Remember that when he died he was 95 years old. So he would have been 97 years today. For the past four years, we’ve brought Wines of South Africa to Nigeria. I have been here for four years; I hope you will remember me as the man who brought WOSA to Nigeria. WOSA has made us proud. This is a clear message from South Africa that our agro industries are real alive. We don’t only produce vegetables and end there but our industry is so advanced that we do produce wines. And we do compete with the greatest in the world.”
“Today we are celebrating Nelson Mandela. Since 2010, the United Nations declared this day an international Nelson Mandela Day. They also called upon everybody in the world; individual, companies and organisations to spend 67minutes of their time on this particular day to acknowledge the 67years that Nelson Mandela spent fighting for the right of the people. And indeed, we have been spending today in history; all of us we have done something for 67minutes. Now this particular 67minutes we lived to drink wine. Let’s drink to that”, he enthused.
The Wines of South Africa Grand Tasting, now in its third edition was in partnership with Spronks Creation Limited; organisers of Nigeria International Wine and Spirit Fair (NIWSF). It aimed to showcase quality wines from over wine producers and over 200 wine brands from different regions in the Cape Wineland of South Africa. The event brought more than 20 wine producers from South Africa to Nigeria to interact with consumers, distributors and wholesalers as well as people in the hospitality and tourism industry.
This year’s event started with a professional wine course training session led by Wine Advisor, Brad Coetzer, from renowned education company ‘Under the Influence’ in partnership with Beverage Intelligence. The course which came with a professional certificate was opened to trade businesses such as hospitality and tourism operators like restaurants, pubs, lounges and food and beverages managers, portfolio managers, gourmet and brand reporters and a business-to-business session with wine distributors and wholesalers.
Wines of South Africa (WOSA) represents all South African wine producers who export their products. WOSA, was established in its current form in 1999, has over 500 producers on its database, comprising all the major South African wine exporters. It is constituted as a not-for-profit company and is totally independent of any producer or wholesaling company. It is also independent of any government department, although it is recognised by government as an Export Council.
WOSA’s mandate is to promote the export of all South African wines in key international markets. Traditional markets include the United Kingdom, Germany Sweden and the Netherlands. More recently, WOSA has also been developing markets for South African wines in the United States, Canada, Russia, and Asia. WOSA is funded by a levy per litre on all bottled natural and sparkling wines exported.