The Commanderie de Bordeaux en Afrique du Sud, founded on La Motte in Franschhoek three years ago, this evening holds its first function in Johannesburg, the capital of SA wine. The Commanderie is an association of over 5000 wine lovers constituted into 79 chapters in 26 countries who endeavour to promote the wines and quality values of Bordeaux. The local chapter is headed by Hanneli Rupert-Koegelenberg and includes such luminaries as Danie de Wet, Etienne le Riche, Whitey Basson, Michael Jordaan and Winnie Bowman.
Five new commandeurs will be intronized this evening including retail legend Solly Kramer, distribution king Gavin Dittmar and Cape Wine masters Margaret Fry, Junel Vermeulen and Kristina Beuthner. Conversation is guaranteed to be lively given all the funny things that have happened in SA wine since the commandeurs last met at the Taj Hotel in central Cape Town two months ago.
This evening’s function goes down next to the Zone in Rosebank. At 54 on Bath, the former Grace hotel now operated by Tsogo Sun. A hotel chain who take wine very seriously indeed, as do the commandeurs.