It was 35 degrees in Robertson yesterday. Today, thankfully, it’s 20 and delightful.
Been 16 years since I first came here with the man Dan. They say Dan was the first buyer ever to get here. It was pretty remote then. Still is, tho' they have tourists. But not by the coach load like in Stellenbosch. Just 'Fifty somethings' who like to wander around discovering things. Staying at guesthouses like the Excelsior Estate Manor House where we stayed last night. Delightful.
I'd never heard of the region when I first came, but Robertson is now second only to Stellenbosch in production – impressive growth. How come? Maybe their curious climate; the morning are usually cloudy and cool. The sun burns off the cloud by noon when it can certainly get hot. But at 3 or 4pm the wind starts up. A cool wind that takes the temperature down again. This explains how a region that would be desert were it not for the river water to irrigate can produce screamingly fresh whites like ever- popular 'Gooseberry Bush'. And they irrigate very sparsely now. Which not only saves the planet but also makes much better wine.
Dan opened up South Africa for us. Since then buyers Peter, Clare, Thomas, Nick, Helen. Now Becca has the SA baton – which she always desperately wanted. Previously in her career she had worked here a fair bit and really fallen for the Cape wine people. It must help that her partner is also very big in South African wine. Becca intends we should all drink more South African. And we are here with Yves 'Le Photo' to capture for the customers images of what inspires Becca...and me.
So that, with son Tom as Minder; keeping us in line and on time, is the team.
He's shouting again.