Four new Cape Wine Masters (l to r): Raymond Noppé, Lizette Tolken, Derek Ramsden and Dave March
The Cape Wine Academy and the Institute of Cape Wine Masters have
announced the names of four new graduates to join its ranks at a
ceremony at Morgenster Estate in Somerset West on Friday, May 4.
This year each CWM graduate also won a special award: Lizette Tolken for Viticulture, Raymond Noppé for Viniculture, and Dave March for Sparkling Wine, while the Brandy Award went to Derek Ramsden.
The graduates represent a broad spectrum of occupational interests: Tolken is an attorney, Noppé a logistics controller for a wine company, Ramsden, a former businessman turned wine consultant and March, a former athlete and now retired teacher and education manager, is now a freelance wine writer.
Tolken’s topic was Cabernet Franc in South Africa and across the globe; Noppé dealt with the Chinese wine market and its potential as a global wine export destination; March focused on Wine investment in South Africa, and Ramsden placed South African brandy in an international context.
Dr Paul Clüver of Paul Cluver Wines and De Rust Estate in Elgin was designated Wine Personality of the Year – for his visionary contribution to the wine industry, encompassing biodiversity, conservation and environmental tourism as well as black empowerment initiatives over many years. His award was presented to him at a gala dinner at 96 Winery Road Restaurant, Somerset West, on Saturday, 5 May.
“Over the last 28 years some 197 candidates have enrolled, of whom 82 (42 men and 40 women) have qualified and 22 are at present studying to become CWMs,” said chairman Andy Roediger CWM.
The Institute’s current membership stands at 75 (including three honorary members).
All dissertations are available for perusal on the Cape Wine Academy website and at the SAWIS library.
Dissertation: Cabernet Franc in South Africa and across the globe
Lizette Tolken attended a high school reunion in 2005 where Cape Wine Master Tom Blok presented a tasting and was so intrigued by his passion and knowledge that she immediately enrolled for the Preliminary course at the Cape Wine Academy.
Lizette is an admitted attorney, notary and conveyancer of the High Court of South Africa and has been practising law for 19 years. She also practised as a debt counsellor and acts as Commissioner of the Small Claims Court in Stellenbosch. She also lectures and marks assignments for the Cape Wine Academy.
Cabernet Franc is the (grape) love of her life and she is a self-proclaimed brandy ambassador for South Africa. Travelling being one of her favourite hobbies, she has visited most of the winelands of the world, with Portugal being her favourite destination.
Lizette was part of an informal Stellenbosch-based tasting group for two years with fellow graduates Raymond and Dave and is proud to have been involved with lecturing students in Langa as part of the Government’s Sommelier Level 1 project.
Tolken was awarded the Viticulture Award sponsored sponsored by Hein Koegelenberg of La Motte Estate
Dissertation: The Chinese Wine Market - and its potential as a Global Wine Export Destination
Raymond Noppé has been the production and logistics controller for Stark-Condé Wines since November 2011, after working as production and logistics manager at MAN Vintners for five years.
He completed the Diploma course in July 2007 and enrolled for CWM in January 2008, while continuing to lecture for the Academy, later at Certificate level.
His interest in wine was sparked in April 2002 when he joined Ferdinand’s Tours & Adventures in Cape Town as an assistant to a Cape Winelands tour guide, helping to pour wine for backpackers. One month after completing his CWA Introduction course, he was guiding tours himself.
Six months later his passion for wine had intensified and he was offered a casual position which later became fulltime in the tasting room at Villiera Wines.
While keeping tabs with the tasting room over weekends, he also worked two harvests in the cellar, was involved in a BEE programme, occupational health and safety related matters and WIETA accreditation. During this time he completed the CWA Certificate course and started with the first module of the Diploma course. In 2004, he also started lecturing for the Academy at the Introduction level.
Noppé Noppé received the Viniculture Award by Kosie Steenkamp of Groenkloof
Dissertation: South African Brandy in an International Context
Derek Ramsden has always been entrepreneurial by nature, turning the main passions of his life into successful businesses.
After 18 years in the family cabinetmaking and shopfitting business with his father, he has carved out a very exclusive niche market in the wine industry by starting One Wine Cellar Consultants.
Already in its third year of operation One Wine Cellar Consultants is the only specialist company in the design, manufacture, sourcing, stocking management and consulting field for private and restaurant wine cellars.
Armed with the Cape Wine Masters degree, Derek aims to make a name for himself locally and internationally. Who knows, in years to come, maybe his six-year-old son Tyler will be going into business with his dad in turn?
Ramsden received the Van Ryn’s Trophy for Brandy Excellence represented by Van Ryn Brand manager Caroline Saunders.
Dissertation: Wine Investment in South Africa
Dave March was a dedicated athlete in his younger years, completing many marathons under 2½ hours, so wine wasn’t very conducive to a hard training regimen.
During a visit to Australia for a year, while relaxing after a strenuous game of boules with friends at Peterson’s winery near Australia’s Hunter Valley, he remembers thinking how nice it would be to become more involved with wine. On his return to the UK he immediately took a Saturday job in a local wine shop, signed up for wine courses and completed the WSET Diploma.
As he was a teacher and examinations officer and then adult education manager for 30 years in a large comprehensive school, and not in the trade, it meant he couldn’t attend most of the course and the enjoyment disappeared.
He loves travelling, and has spent all his holidays in wine countries, including New Zealand, the US, Spain and France, as well as four consecutive summers in the Moselle and Alsace wine regions!
He is of the opinion that South Africa offers as much, if not more, to the wine lover than anywhere else in the world – which is why he now lectures for the Cape Wine Academy and contributes articles to ‘wine.co.za’.
March received the Villiera Sabrage Award for Sparkling wine presented by Cathy Brewer of Villiera.