A wooded Cabernet Sauvignon from Wellington Wines took the crown by clinching the prestigious General Smuts Trophy as overall SA Champion Wine of the 2023 South African Young Wine Show. The General Smuts Trophy was last awarded to a Cabernet Sauvignon 27 years ago in 1996 and it is the sixth time in the history of the 191-year-old competition that a Cabernet Sauvignon bags this major award.
The SA Young Wine Show was held for the first time in 1833. It is one of the oldest wine shows in the world and gives winemakers the opportunity to showcase the best wines of the current vintage.
Wellington Wines receiving the General Smuts Trophy with Christo Pienaar (Chairperson – SA Young Wine Show), Johan Hurter, Daniel Slabber, Christo Smit, Francois van Niekerk, Breyton Milford (General Manager – Agri-Expo)
Wellington Wines also won the General Smuts Trophy in 2018 for a wooded Pinotage and this year reached a double achievement by clinching the Pietman Hugo Trophy for the winery achieving the highest total score for its five best wines.
This is the first time that Wellington Wines walks away with this accolade after sharing it with Robertson Winery in 2020. Thereby, Wellington Wines become only the fourth cellar to win these trophies simultaneously since the inception of the Pietman Hugo Trophy in 1994.
Wellington Wines receiving the Pietman Hugo Trophy with Christo Pienaar (Chairperson – SA Young Wine Show), Johan Hurter, Daniel Slabber, Christo Smit, Francois van Niekerk, Breyton Milford (General Manager – Agri-Expo)
With regard to overall results, Wellington Wines reached a further remarkable achievement by also entering four champion wines out of the possible 17 categories in addition to the General Smuts and Pietman Hugo Trophies – namely the SA Champion Cabernet Sauvignon (wooded), Pinotage (wooded), Shiraz (unwooded), and Merlot (unwooded).
Two of Wellington Wines’ winemakers can as winners of the General Smuts and Pietman Hugo Trophies look forward to a sponsored six-day trip overseas – thanks to a partnership since 2019 between the South African National Wine Show Association (SANWSA) and Porex – a prominent Paarl-based supplier of machinery and winemaking equipment to the industry. These winemakers will visit amongst others a well-known fermentation company and filtration plant in Germany, as well as several local wine cellars.
Wellington Wines receiving the four SA Champion Trophies for their Cabernet Sauvignon (wooded), Pinotage (wooded), Shiraz (unwooded), and Merlot (unwooded), from Christo Pienaar (Chairperson – SA Young Wine Show, far left) and Pieter van Wyk (chairman of Agri-Expo, far right)