* SAA would consider a partner to assist it in running its loss-making operation, the Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown said earlier this week. The airline’s application for more funding was recently rejected.
* Wines of South Africa (WOSA) has opened a Hong Kong office to market our country’s wines to all of Asia, and will be managed by Michaela Stander, who has managed the region from South Africa for the past six years. South African wine sales into China grew by 5% and to Japan by 12% in the past year. The marketing program includes consumer education, a sommelier competition, dinners, and offering wines by the glass. It will be visible at the HKTDC fair in Hong Kong next week, and at ProWein China from 12 – 14 November.
* The 40th annual Volvo Ocean Race of 39000 nautical miles, will welcome the first yachts into Cape Town on Sunday, seven teams in total participating in the race. In Cape Town an ‘in-port race‘ and an inaugural Open Ocean Festival will be held, the yachts heading to Abu Dhabi on 19 November. The City of Cape Town is sponsoring the Cape Town leg of the Volvo Ocean Race, expecting an economic return of R 540 million for the city. The TV audience size for the Volvo Ocean Race ranks third after the Olympics and FIFA World Cup.
* A group of younger Franschhoek winemakers has created a Franschhoek Appellation Grand Prestige status of wines in the valley, a peer evaluation of the village’s top wines. Intended as a point of difference for Franschhoek’s wines, the new Appellation Grand Prestige status will highlight Franschhoek’s regional terroir uniqueness in respect of Semillon, Chardonnay, and Cabernet Sauvignon, said Christian Eedes, who was the Master of Ceremonies at the launch event, and assisted in guiding the peer evaluation. Wine drinkers should be able to taste Franschhoek when they drink its wines, as the drinkers of Swartland Independent wines do. Eedes was particularly complimentary about Franschhoek’s Semillon. Most Franschhoek wineries, with a few exceptions, have bought into the Franschhoek terroir focus, Eedes said, a process led by Haut Espoir’s Rob Armstrong, Stony Brook’s Craig McNaught, and Môreson’s Clayton Reabow. A total of 55 Franschhoek wines was evaluated by 14 Franschhoek winemakers, ‘wanting to decide our own fate’. The first ten wines to bear the Appellation Grand Prestige designation are the following: Chamonix Chardonnay Reserve 2013 (winemaker Gottfried Mocke), Maison Chardonnay 2013 (Antwan Bondesio), Môreson Mercator Chardonnay 2013 (Clayton Reabow), Môreson Knoputibak Chardonnay-Semillon 2012 (Clayton Reabow), Rickety Bridge Chardonnay 2013 (Wynand Grobler), Rickety Bridge Paulina’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 (Wynand Grobler), Franschhoek Vineyards Semillon 2012 (Richard Duckitt), Franschhoek Vineyards Semillon 2013 (Richard Duckitt), Haut Espoir Semillon 2009 (Rob Armstrong), and Stony Brook Ghost Gum Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 (Craig McNaught).
* Food24 has conducted a Banting survey amongst more than 7000 respondents, predominantly female and 30 – 45 years old. The Banters have been on the eating plan for the last six months, and are keeping to it strictly. Weight loss is not the prime motivator for Banting, it being more important to be less hungry, to eat more high fat food, and to have more energy when Banting. Bread was the most difficult food to give up while Banting, followed by potatoes, and sugar. Banters intend to carry on with the eating plan indefinitely, and do not find it difficult to follow the principles of the Banting eating plan. Most Banters have not consulted a doctor nor a nutritionist about the Banting eating plan.