* The Penny Ferry is to be reintroduced in the V&A Waterfront on 1 November, connecting the main shopping centre side to the more commercial and business side at the Clocktower. The ride will cost R5. The ferry stopped opening in 1997 when the swing bridge was constructed. The Penny Ferry service was officially relaunched by Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom earlier this week.
* The judging for the 2014 Diners Club Winemaker of the Year has been completed, and the winners of the 34th annual competition will be announced next month. In evaluating the nominees, it was ‘the heart and soul of the winemakers that stood out strongly‘, dominating the quality of the wines they made. The Winemaker of the Year entered in this year’s theme category of White Blends, while the Young Winemaker of the Year was evaluated on any red wine. Judges included Dave Hughes (panel chairman), Beatriz Machado from Portugal, retailer Carrie Adams, Nomonde Kubheka (wine judge and educator), Christine Rudman (wine judge), Colin Frith (GM of Hazendal), and Margaret Fry (Director of Cape Wine Academy). (received via media release from African Sky Media)
* At the International Spirit & Wine Competition held in London recently, five South African wines won a trophy: Graham Beck Blanc de Blancs 2009 won Best Sparkling Wine; Jordan Cobblers Hill 2010 won Best Red Bland; Oldenburg Vineyards Chenin Blanc 2013 won Best Chenin Blanc; Diemersfontein Carpe Diem Pinotage 2012 won Best Pinotage; Bloemendal Suider Terras Sauvignon Blanc 2013 won Best Sauvignon Blanc.
* ‘Season of Sauvignon’ Festival will be held on the Durbanville Wine Route on 25 and 26 October, reports the Weekend Argus. The wine estates participating are Altydgedacht, Bloemendal, D’Aria, Diemersdal, De Grendel, Durbanville Hills, Meerendal, Nitida, Klein Roosboom, Hillcrest, Groot Phesantekraal, and Signal Gun. At the Festival a Durbanville Twelve blend, made from one ton of grapes of each wine estate, will be launched.
* Spier is hosting a Secret Festival Conference on 24 October, and a Secret Market on 25 October. The Spier 21 Gables wines will be available to taste. Speakers at the Conference include Vanessa Marx from Dear Me; Ole Hansen, sustainable Norwegian salmon smoker from London; and Sheryl Ozinsky and Kurt Ackerman from the Oranjezicht City Farm. (received via e-mail from Spier)
* Bouchard Finlayson is hosting another tutored tasting of its wine by winemaker Peter Finlayson on 19 November at Kloof Street House. A selection of tapas will be paired for the tasting with 12 wines from the Hemel-en-Aarde wine estate. Cost is R200. (received via media release from FIVESTAR PR)