SA Wine and Food Tourism Award for Benguela Cove

Benguela Cove Lagoon Wine Estate

At the 2020 Wine and Food Tourism Awards in September, Benguela Cove Lagoon Wine Estate was recognised as one of South Africa’s top three honourees in the ‘Innovation’ category.

The estate received the award for the creation of the ‘Ultimate Benguela’ visitor experience. This includes a wine tasting pontoon tour of the lagoon, to see the diverse marine and birdlife. There are over 100 species of birds in the protected reserve and extensive wetlands, as well as mountain leopards and wild horses.

The 200-hectare wine estate is becoming a popular ecotourism destination, with its location in the UNESCO designated Kogelberg Biosphere. It is at the lowest height, at sea level, and with the longest seaboard of any vineyard in the world, says owner Penny Streeter OBE:
“The estate is committed to the standards recommended by Wines of South Africa (WoSA) and its Sustainable Wine South Africa (SWSA) programme. Ultimate Benguela showcases the best in viticulture and environmental protection in an entertaining day out for lovers of good food and wine. The experience demonstrates how people can live and work in harmony within the fragile beauty of our natural environment, to harvest wonderful produce and a life-enhancing experience for visitors, the onsite teams and the wider community.”

Visitors can tour the state-of-the-art winery and wine-making exhibition and dine in the Moody Lagoon Restaurant. It offers local seafood and wine-paired food options, guided by the resident sommeliers. Ultimate Benguela is inclusive, for everyone, says Penny Streeter: “This is one of the few wine estates fully wheel-chair accessible.”

Benguela Cove Scoops Wine Awards

“This has been an amazing month for us. We have never won so many awards in such a short period of time. The hard work of our cellar master Johann Fourie and his team, and the excellent wine we are producing is increasingly recognised by the top competition judges in South Africa and other countries.”

Leading UK wine writer Tim Atkin MW launched his South Africa Special Report on September 10th and a major achiever was Benguela Cove, winning Medals of Excellence for all six of its entries for the first time, in the eighth annual report.

Top achievers included the Catalina Semillon 2018. Produced from a single, 0.9-hectare vineyard, the semillon’s youthful character adds a herbal note and produces a lot of tension that benefits from time to evolve, says Johann Fourie. The Vinography Sauvignon Blanc 2019, in the vineyard’s artisan range, was also recognised.

The estate went on to win plaudits in the Novare SA Terroir Wine Awards with the recently released Benguela Cove Catalina Sémillon 2018. Still in its infancy, the wine also caught the attention of the Platter’s guide which awarded it with 4.5 stars earlier in the year. In further news the 2020 Sauvignon Blanc Report by voted Benguela Cove Estate 2019 in the top 10 wooded wines. The estate then went on to win Four Gold Medals at the National Young Wine Show. Benguela Cove achieved gold medals for its Malbec and Semillon/ Sauvignon Blanc blend and, for the second year, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with a further nine silver medals awarded. Most recently Johann Fouries’ team scooped four gold medals, including one double gold in the Michelangelo International Wine & Spirits Awards. Now in its 24th year, the competition has judges representing all seven continents.

“Following the success for our Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon wines, now the Bordeaux red varietals and Pinot Noir have won accolades. Also recognised were our dessert wine Noble Late Harvest – and the Lighthouse Collection Moody Lagoon red blend won a gold medal, highlighting Benguela Cove’s quality across ranges of wine, and for both red and white wines.”

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