On Oct. 4, Star Wine List will celebrate the best wine lists in South Africa and the teams behind them. The prestigious Grand Prix category, recognizing the best wine lists with more than 600 references, will be presented by warewashing specialist Winterhalter.
"Star Wine list is an indication of quality and a guarantee of a high level of refinement. The Winterhalter name also reflects these standards but in terms of providing unparalleled glass washing performance. Wine destinations know that if they use Winterhalter, they are using the best and looking after their investment within their businesses. It is important for any business to be linked with complimentary brands, and brands that reflect their own ethos," says Brandon Park, General Manager at Winterhalter South Africa.
Winterhalter was founded in 1947, and it's still a family company. And even today, the characteristics that make Winterhalter the company they are now can be seen from those days - close proximity to the customer, the desire to develop new solutions and then the courage to introduce them to the market.
Today, the company have 46 subsidiaries around the world.
"In terms of Winterhalter South Africa, we see this as the most developed market in Africa and the gateway to other countries on the continent. The restaurant industry is really sophisticated with some of our customers, like FYN, appearing on the top 100 restaurants in the world list."
What do you hope your engagement in Star Wine List of the Year South Africa will bring?
"Demonstrating to the market how committed we are to them and that they have access, locally, to the world's leading glass washing solution, with all the support this entails. Bringing a better understanding of the importance of glassware, and the washing of this glassware, in the overall presentation and enjoyment of the wine drinking experience. A great wine in a grubby glass is not a pleasant experience."
The first impressions are lasting impressions and usually visual, so that sparkling perfectly clean glass is a key factor
What do you hope to see coming through in the competing wine lists in the Grand Prix category?
"A reflection of the diversity of local wine, with some international offerings to add interest and show how local wines compare. Fair representation of the larger producers along with the smaller boutique winemakers."
What is the definition of a great wine list, in your opinion?
"One that reflects the venue's passions and demonstrates a level of thought. I believe there should be a mixture of price levels to suit every pocket, and as wide a variety as is practical. There is no point in having seven Sauvignon Blancs and one Chenin Blanc, for example. It is all about balance, as with any good wine. The list should also clearly reflect the venue's ambience and compliment the menu. There should always be some oddball wines thrown in to add interest."
Anything you want to add?
"A wine glass is vital in enjoying the drinking experience. However, glasses are expensive and fragile. Without proper care in the washing process the cost of breakages can soon spiral out of control. Additionally, the first impressions are lasting impressions and usually visual, so that sparkling perfectly clean glass is a key factor."
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