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For the love of Dombeya

Date: Thu, Jan 14, 2010 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



One of the great things about this business is the passion of the people in and around it. Very rarely do you find anyone involved on the winemaking and viticultural side who isn't in some way besotted with the possibility and mystery of wine. More often than not such people infect others with their passion- sometimes people just find their way to wine of their own accord. Either way, once it has got you hooked, the wine bug doesn't let go without a fight, but then again, who wants to find a cure anyway!

We love receiving messages like this one below. And we don't know where or how Nonhlanha found her love of wine, only that we're glad she's found us.

I love my chardonnay, I think it is the sexiest varietal that we were blessed with, I was looking for a chardonnay that will sweep my feet away, the love of my life...
A wine that I can take to the next brunch, braai with pride and excitement, that friends will enjoy and will put it on the list to buy..
Sometimes it's strange how you find love..
As usual after a month or two, I visit Makro Woodmead and/or Winesense Melrose to stock up, basically buying wines that were recommended by friends or best views from Wine magazine etc..
This time around I decided to ask one of the wine packers at Makro to recommend a good chardonnay or uMakoya...
I bought one bottle because I didn't trust his recommendation and really bought the wine to please him...
I was not disappointed in fact I have learned not to take people for granted... I wish I have asked for his name so that I can thank him...
I have bought a couple of bottles, 'cause I'm still excited
I have 2 or 3 bottles of my favourite wine in my boot due to the poor wine list of some of the Jo'burg restaurants and Dombeya Chardonnay 2007 included
I have found the love of my life,
This is the wine that when I have a sip, all the emotions of excitement come back and you share the tears of joy...
Thank you very much to the wine maker and to the terroir that has produced such DIVA!!!!!!!


Nonhlanhla Mzolo

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What's ahead in 2010?

Date: Tue, Jan 5, 2010 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Indeed! We wish we knew, but the bottom line is that it is likely to be a big year for South Africa and Dombeya. With the World Cup coming up in the middle of the year, all eyes will be on the Rainbow Nation and it is a big chance for everyone here to strut their stuff in full effect.

At Dombeya, we'll be opening a full-time cellar door sometime around March. Up until now we've been appointment only, but that's all about to change. We are in the process of converting the right hand side of the old woolshop into a purpose built cellar door that will be homely and welcoming, so pop on in and say hi at your leisure.

This will coincide with the opening of the Long Table restaurant in the same building, which we are also very excited about. Long Table will be serving tasty, authentic food and also killer coffee in a relaxed environment so stay tuned for more info on an opening date.

Other than that, we'll still be doing our best to make creative, thoughtful wines of real character and interest. There are some terrific releases planned for 2010, certainly some of the best wines we have made yet, so all in all 2010 holds a lot to look forward to. Here's a great one.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

What's ahead in 2010?

Date: Tue, Jan 5, 2010 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Indeed! We wish we knew, but the bottom line is that it is likely to be a big year for South Africa and Dombeya. With the World Cup coming up in the middle of the year, all eyes will be on the Rainbow Nation and it is a big chance for everyone here to strut their stuff in full effect.

At Dombeya, we'll be opening a full-time cellar door sometime around March. Up until now we've been appointment only, but that's all about to change. We are in the process of converting the right hand side of the old woolshop into a purpose built cellar door that will be homely and welcoming, so pop on in and say hi at your leisure.

This will coincide with the opening of the Long Table restaurant in the same building, which we are also very excited about. Long Table will be serving tasty, authentic food and also killer coffee in a relaxed environment so stay tuned for more info on an opening date.

Other than that, we'll still be doing our best to make creative, thoughtful wines of real character and interest. There are some terrific releases planned for 2010, certainly some of the best wines we have made yet, so all in all 2010 holds a lot to look forward to. Here's to a great one.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya's 2009 in Review

Date: Fri, Dec 18, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Where to start? Well, it is fair to say that it was a tough year all round for everyone in the wine industry. Anytime that you have a global recession, luxury goods are going to take a hit, and wine certainly falls into that category.

Nonetheless, it turned out a pretty good year for Dombeya. Sold some more wine, met lots of nice people, saw plenty of interesting places around the world. There wasn't much time to sit around worrying, that's for sure. But without boring you too much with the minor details, here are the highlights as we saw them,

1- The Dombeya Scholarship - first time effort and it turned out a winner. Ntando Buthelezi did herself and South Africa proud with her time in Australia and we'll be seeing and hearing plenty about this wonderful young lady in the future.

2- Haskell Launch - a success. Our sister brand hit the ground running with a great deal of anticipation and a huge win in the Tri-Nations Challenge for the Haskell Pillars Syrah 2007. There were also some stunning reviews from Jancis Robinson, and a gold medal in the Trophy Wine Show.

3- Excellent reviews from Wine Spectator and Steven Tanzer.

4- Open Day 2009 - a great turn out which we will ramp up again next year. We opened every wine we have ever made, and also held the first "Human Llama Trophy" to find the best wine spitter, which was a lot of fun.

5- Fire - now that got a little scary in February. A huge fire swept around the Helderberg, thankfully missing our vineyards but sadly causing a lot of damage to many of our neighbours and friends.

6- Vintage 2009 - a cracker. Lots of great wines to be found from 2009 and we keenly await their emergence from barrel and tank over the next couple of years.

7- Royal visit - Prince Albert of Monaco popped in for a visit with some friends and was impressed with the wines. What a nice man!

We could go on, but that covers most of the year. All that is left is to wish everyone a great Christmas and New year, may Santa be kind to you and fill your stockings with Dombeya!

Best Wishes

The Dombeya Team

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya's 2009 in Review

Date: Fri, Dec 18, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Where to start? Well, it is fair to say that it was a tough year all round for everyone in the wine industry. Anytime that you have a global recession, luxury goods are going to take a hit, and wine certainly falls into that category.

Nonetheless, it turned out a pretty good year for Dombeya. Sold some more wine, met lots of nice people, saw plenty of interesting places around the world. There wasn't much time to sit around worrying, that's for sure. But without boring you too much with the minor details, here are the highlights as we saw them,

1- The Dombeya Scholarship - first time effort and it turned out a winner. Ntando Buthelezi did herself and South Africa proud with her time in Australia and we'll be seeing and hearing plenty about this wonderful young lady in the future.

2- Haskell Launch - a success. Our sister brand hit the ground running with a great deal of anticipation and a huge win in the Tri-Nations Challenge for the Haskell Pillars Syrah 2007. There were also some stunning reviews from Jancis Robinson, and a gold medal in the Trophy Wine Show.

3- Excellent reviews from Wine Spectator and Steven Tanzer.

4- Open Day 2009 - a great turn out which we will ramp up again next year. We opened every wine we have ever made, and also held the first "Human Llama Trophy" to find the best wine spitter, which was a lot of fun.

5- Fire - now that got a little scary in February. A huge fire swept around the Helderberg, thankfully missing our vineyards but sadly causing a lot of damage to many of our neighbours and friends.

6- Vintage 2009 - a cracker. Lots of great wines to be found from 2009 and we keenly await their emergence from barrel and tank over the next couple of years.

7- Royal visit - Prince Albert of Monaco popped in for a visit with some friends and was impressed with the wines. What a nice man!

We could go on, but that covers most of the year. All that is left is to wish everyone a great Christmas and New year, may Santa be kind to you and fill your stockings with Dombeya!

Best Wishes

The Dombeya Team

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Rianie elected to Cape Winemakers Guild

Date: Thu, Dec 10, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



It has been a big year for Dombeya and our sister brand, Haskell. Tons of awards and accolades, lots of nice press, but an announcement this week from the Cape Winemakers Guild is particularly significant.

Significant, because by being elected into the Guild, Rianie becomes the only woman winemaker in that elite group. Now we can debate the merits of why no woman has been deemed worthy until now but it is probably best to look forward, rather than backwards, on this matter. Lets just say that it is a wonderful moment for Rianie, and rightful recognition of a commitment to quality winemaking that has been ongoing for the best part of two decades.

The Cape Winemakers Guild has been in operation for 27 years. New members are admitted by invitation only, and must have at least five years of winemaking experience and a history of excellence in wine production in order to qualify. Then the candidate's wines are judged by the Guild members, whereupon a final decision is made as to his or her inclusion in the Guild membership.

Every year, each member produces a small volume wine exclusively for the Cape Winemakers Guild Auction. It is one of the highlights on the South African wine calendar, with the wines fetching premium prices at a highly contested sale.

It is an exciting moment for Rianie, and for everyone involved at Dombeya Wines . Congratulations Rianie!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Rianie elected to Cape Winemakers Guild

Date: Thu, Dec 10, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



It has been a big year for Dombeya and our sister brand, Haskell. Tons of awards and accolades, lots of nice press, but an announcement this week from the Cape Winemakers Guild is particularly significant.

Significant, because by being elected into the Guild, Rianie becomes the only woman winemaker in that elite group. Now we can debate the merits of why no woman has been deemed worthy until now but it is probably best to look forward, rather than backwards, on this matter. Lets just say that it is a wonderful moment for Rianie, and rightful recognition of a commitment to quality winemaking that has been ongoing for the best part of two decades.

The Cape Winemakers Guild has been in operation for 27 years. New members are admitted by invitation only, and must have at least five years of winemaking experience and a history of excellence in wine production in order to qualify. Then the candidate's wines are judged by the Guild members, whereupon a final decision is made as to his or her inclusion in the Guild membership.

Every year, each member produces a small volume wine exclusively for the Cape Winemakers Guild Auction. It is one of the highlights on the South African wine calendar, with the wines fetching premium prices at a highly contested sale.

It is an exciting moment for Rianie, and for everyone involved at Dombeya Wines . Congratulations Rianie!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Winner- Around the World with Dombeya 2009

Date: Tue, Dec 1, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



It wasn't a hard choice this year. Sharon Van Aswegen and her intrepid band of Dombeya drinkers sent in a photo that was full of fun ( it is amazing what ideas you can come up with on your second bottle of Dombeya!) and her photo had the touch of imagination that set it apart.

Congratulations to Sharon, you have 10 cases (60 bottles) of Dombeya Wine coming your way just in time for the x-mas festivities.

The "Around the World with Dombeya" competition is on again in 2010 with another 10 cases up for grabs so get your camera's clicking!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Winner- Around the World with Dombeya 2009

Date: Tue, Dec 1, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



It wasn't a hard choice this year. Sharon Van Aswegen and her intrepid band of Dombeya drinkers sent in a photo that was full of fun ( it is amazing what ideas you can come up with on your second bottle of Dombeya!) and her photo had the touch of imagination that set it apart.

Congratulations to Sharon, you have 10 cases (60 bottles) of Dombeya Wine coming your way just in time for the x-mas festivities.

The "Around the World with Dombeya" competition is on again in 2010 with another 10 cases up for grabs so get your camera's clicking!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya Scholarship cancelled from lack of interest

Date: Fri, Nov 27, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Sadly, we have to report that the 2010 edition of the Dombeya Scholarship has been cancelled. There were no applicants this year.

This despite making a presentation to the University of Stellenbosch and the potential candidates earlier this year, so it is fair to say that we are a little disappointed. Our first candidate, Ntando Buthelezi, was a huge success and impressed everyone in Australia with her enthusiasm and application. Our hope was to unearth another future wine industry leader from a disadvantaged background this year, but it looks like we'll have to wait until 2011 to try again.

And try again we will. It is a worthy initiative, and the 70 000 rand up for grabs in travel and wages/salaries during the period is not to be sneezed at. Many thanks to our Australian partners Voyager Estate, Kaesler Wines and the University of Adelaide for their ongoing commitment.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya Scholarship cancelled from lack of interest

Date: Fri, Nov 27, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Sadly, we have to report that the 2010 edition of the Dombeya Scholarship has been cancelled. There were no applicants this year.

This despite making a presentation to the University of Stellenbosch and the potential candidates earlier this year, so it is fair to say that we are a little disappointed. Our first candidate, Ntando Buthelezi, was a huge success and impressed everyone in Australia with her enthusiasm and application. Our hope was to unearth another future wine industry leader from a disadvantaged background this year, but it looks like we'll have to wait until 2011 to try again.

And try again we will. It is a worthy initiative, and the 70 000 rand up for grabs in travel and wages/salaries during the period is not to be sneezed at. Many thanks to our Australian partners Voyager Estate, Kaesler Wines and the University of Adelaide for their ongoing commitment.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya hits the Harbour City

Date: Tue, Nov 17, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



We have been trying for a while to get our wines into Australia. It has been no mean feat, as South African wine is something of an unknown quantity there (and without a proven track record) so in the main there was polite indifference to the idea.

Which is strange, because South Africans have been moving to Australian en masse for the best part of fifteen years and one would think that there would be some demand for SA wines down under. Nonetheless, despite pointing this unique selling propostion out to a number of Australia's leading importers, our pleas fell on deaf ears.

Then we ran into Eurocentric Wines principal, Neville Yates. When we heard he was a wine importer, we pinned him to the ground and threatened to intravenously feed him Tassenberg unless he agreed to take us on. Faced with such a choice, he signed up, and in early 2009 our first wines arrived in Sydney, Australia.

Both Rianie and Grant have spent some time in the Sydney market with Neville in the intervening period, Rianie especially so after the Tri-Nations win in September. As a result, in company with Neville's hard work and persistence, we have secured some fantastic listings at world class restaurants. These include Aria, Bentley Bar , Quay and Gallileo , amongst others.

Our wines have also made it into the Perth market, and various other regional on and off trade premises which we'll certainly elaborate on at a later date.

It is wonderful to see Dombeya being enjoyed and appreciated in a mecca of fine food like Sydney, and needless to say, we greatly appreciate the support that everyone has offered.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya hits the Harbour City

Date: Tue, Nov 17, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



We have been trying for a while to get our wines into Australia. It has been no mean feat, as South African wine is something of an unknown quantity there (and without a proven track record) so in the main there was polite indifference to the idea.

Which is strange, because South Africans have been moving to Australian en masse for the best part of fifteen years and one would think that there would be some demand for SA wines down under. Nonetheless, despite pointing this unique selling propostion out to a number of Australia's leading importers, our pleas fell on deaf ears.

Then we ran into Eurocentric Wines principal, Neville Yates. When we heard he was a wine importer, we pinned him to the ground and threatened to intravenously feed him Tassenberg unless he agreed to take us on. Faced with such a choice, he signed up, and in early 2009 our first wines arrived in Sydney, Australia.

Both Rianie and Grant have spent some time in the Sydney market with Neville in the intervening period, Rianie especially so after the Tri-Nations win in September. As a result, in company with Neville's hard work and persistence, we have secured some fantastic listings at world class restaurants. These include Aria, Bentley Bar , Quay and Gallileo , amongst others.

Our wines have also made it into the Perth market, and various other regional on and off trade premises which we'll certainly elaborate on at a later date.

It is wonderful to see Dombeya being enjoyed and appreciated in a mecca of fine food like Sydney, and needless to say, we greatly appreciate the support that everyone has offered.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Jancis tastes Dombeya

Date: Wed, Nov 11, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



When it come to big names in the world of wine writing, they don't come much bigger than Jancis Robinson. If you had to name the five leading names of wine criticism, then doubtless you would come up with her in there somewhere. A prolific writer and author of numerous books (including the Oxford Companion to Wine), she also has that marker of greatness in any field of endeavour- being known universally by her first name alone.

Jancis popped by to taste the Dombeya range in London last month at the Mega Tasting in Earls Court. Here are her reviews on the wines tasted,

Dombeya Sauvignon Blanc 2009 (Stellenbosch) 16.5
Drink 2009-10
Firm, mineral nose - tastes more like Sancerre than anything else, and is quite a bit cheaper than most Sancerres are at the moment. Already quite open with a beginning, middle and end.

Dombeya Samara 2005 (Stellenbosch) 16.5 Drink 2008-12
36,000 bottles of this blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 5% Malbec. Very dark and interesting. Already mellow and complete. A very slightly stern streak but it spreads across the palate admirably.

Dombeya Merlot 2007 (Stellenbosch) 16 Drink 2010-14
Sweet and pruney. Good freshness. Tight finish. Serious wine.14.5%

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