Considered by wine connoisseurs to be the nation’s oldest premium wine festival, the Juliet Cullinan Standard Bank Wine Festival will celebrate its 25th Anniversary in May 2015. For a quarter of a century, Juliet Cullinan has brought distinguished winemakers to Johannesburg for an epic celebration of fine wine.
During a brief visit to Cape Town, Juliet invited an intimate group of wine enthusiasts to join her for an intimate lunch and wine celebration at Ryan’s Kitchen in Franschhoek. Declining the invite did not cross my mind once! I’ve never met the ‘dame of Johannesburg’s wine world’ in person and was excited to visit chef Ryan Smith’s new restaurant venue. Ryan’s Kitchen has recently relocated to Place Vendôme in Franschhoek Main Road.
A glass of Graham Beck MCC Blanc de Blancs was quite fitting to kicked-off the luncheon. Cellar Master Pieter Ferreira’s middle name is not “Bubbles” for no reason. Following his studies, Pieter spent 7 years in Franschhoek as apprentice to Achim von Arnim of Haute Cabriere. In 1990 he joined Graham Beck and in 2004 Pieter was crowned Diners Club Winemaker of the Year for his Graham Beck Blanc de Blancs 1999 Cap Classique. 2015 marks this legendary winemaker’s 25th vintage at Graham Beck Wines.