Aubergine Restaurant won Grand Prix in South Africa

Ralph Reynolds and Harald Bresselschmidt, Aubergine, and Brandon Parker from Winterhalter, flanked by Tawanda Marume and Liora Levi. Photo: Tahier Parker.
Andreas Grube
Published 04-October-2022
News / South Africa

Aubergine Restaurant in Cape Town won two categories when Star Wine List celebrated the great wine lists of South Africa for the first time on Oct. 4, in cooperation with the South African Sommeliers Association (SASA). Apart from Best Sparkling Wine List, Aubergine also won the prestigious Grand Prix category, recognizing the best wine list with more than 600 listings.

The category was presented by warewashing specialist Winterhalter.

Ralph Reynolds, sommelier at Aubergine commented:

"It feels pretty awesome! I have been looking at our wine list for I don’t know how long and I keep finding something out of line, something out of place. At one point you have to stop and just submit and just walk away. The wine list is always changing and every month I try to upload so that Star Wine List is always up to date. We are always buying wine so it’s not just for tomorrow, it’s for five years ahead. If you want to know what we bought this year, pick up the wine list in five years time!”

”It clearly shows that a lot of thought, care and dedication have gone into this list. Congratulations!,” says jury member Marc Almert, Best Sommelier of the World 2019, about Aubergine’s winning wine list.

Marc Almert continues:

"A superbly curated selection of wines, not only showcasing highlights from the Cape – even from the 1970s! – but also carefully chosen vigneron champagnes, matured Rieslings and many off-the beaten track choices, even in smaller wine producing countries like New Zealand."

This was the first ever Star Wine List of the Year South Africa, and it was held during a live event at the Champagne Telmont Best Young Sommelier of South Africa event in Stellenbosch on Oct. 4.

The silver medalists in the Grand Prix category were:
Café du Vin, Franschhoek
Noop, Paarl
Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa, Johannesburg

Aubergine Restaurant is now qualified for the International Final in June 2023 where they will face wine lists and teams from Scandinavia, UK, Germany, Australia and more.

Brandon Park, Managing Director of Winterhalter in South Africa, the partner for the category, was happy with the jury's selection when Star Wine List's Liora Levi interviewed him after the awards:

”I have known Harald (Bresselschmidt, owner and chef, editor's note) for many years and I am very pleased to see him winning, he has a fantastic wine selection. It is a fantastic restaurant and he is a great guy all around. He has done a really great job in South Africa."

And does he have the right dishwasher?

"He does not yet! But I was pleased to see so many of the finalists have them so that was positive."

Does that mean that you will be part of this again next year?



The jury was made up of three world-class sommeliers from our International Jury Panel:

  • Heidi Mäkinen, Master of Wine, President Finnish Sommelier Association
  • Marc Almert, Best Sommelier of the World 2019
  • Piotr Pietras, Master Sommelier

And as the local sommelier expert jury member, based in Johannesburg:

  • Tawanda Marume, Best Sommelier of Zimbabwe 2020

To read more about how we judge wine lists, see the link below.

Do like the Pros - search 2500+ wine lists

Presented by Winterhalter

Read more about Winterhalter here


Did you know?
You can search for tens of thousands of wines and see where they are listed in restaurants and wine bars.
Search for wine lists on Star Wine List