Vergelegen: New blood – great expectations

by | Feb 27, 2024 | Article, News, Opinion

Over its long and exceptionally colourful and illustrious history, Vergelegen has hosted many people who are considered VIPs. These include monarchy, world leaders and internationally respected opinion shapers.

Wayne Coetzer, MD Vergelegen

In my experience, after 30 years in the hospitality industry, I can confidently say that many other people – albeit  less famous – also fall into this category. Ask any hotelier worth his salt who VIPs are, and he will tell you unequivocally that every guest should enjoy that status. Some may be familiar faces to the hotelier, others newcomers.

Wayne Coetzer MD of Vergelegen

It is also true to say that influential newcomers bring ‘new blood’ to the Vergelegen family, contributing in their own special way to the continued success and progress of the estate.

There is no doubt that new blood means new impetus, combined with originality, innovation and imagination. This, combined with passion, is what defines our meteoric rise as a respected wine estate, both locally and internationally, as well as being increasingly celebrated as a significant contributor to a greener planet. I have always maintained that people make your business.

Our new winemaker, Luke O’Cuinneagain, has already stamped his mark and his identity indelibly on our stable of fine wines. Try our new Sauvignon Blanc and Florence Rosé, to name only two.

Stockman Sivuyile Mthiya points out the attractive markings on the hide of Bullet, the latest addition to the Nguni stud herd.

In the spirit of welcoming new people to the team, I would also like to introduce Caroline van Schalkwyk. Well known in the wine industry and the ‘bubbly’ sector in particular, she joins us to head up our marketing department. We are delighted to have Caroline on board and have no doubt that her effervescent nature will be appreciated by staff, customers and guests alike.

Vergelegen, as most are aware, is far more than a world-class wine estate. It is also  a significant leader and contributor to conservation. This endeavour is not restricted to the natural world, where our initiatives in water conservation, indigenous plant management and wildlife conservation have already made a massive impact. It is the policy and indeed commitment of Vergelegen to promote and protect all that is truly South African within the extent of its scope of influence.

Perhaps one of our more novel initiatives has been our programme to establish, sustain and grow our Nguni herd. Ngunis are fundamentally representative of African cultural heritage. Like the Cape hunting dog, Ngunis are unique in their individual presentation. Colour combinations are intriguing, so much so that the Zulu people have given imaginative and descriptive names to many of their colour variations.

In our efforts to keep a vibrant and diverse bloodline going within our Nguni herd, Vergelegen is rolling out the red carpet…or is it green pastures… for the arrival of Bullet, our new VIP stud bull.

Bullet boasts black and white colouring, Lunga in Zulu, which will  hopefully manifest again and again in the not-so-distant future.

As Managing Director and de facto custodian of Vergelegen, I welcome Bullet with great expectations and with a promise of lush meadows, cool clear waters and love. I wish him a future of peace and comfort, enhanced by amenable bovine company.

As with all our other newcomers, we are bullish that he will soon feel most welcome and a VIP member of the Vergelegen family.

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