Monday, November 28, 2011

A Small Step in the Industry,Giant Leap for ME!!

After some speculation and mysterious tweets I can announce what it is all about. From December 1, I will be running my own consultancy business looking after a couple of smaller wineries. Why? I was retrenched in August and had to decide what to do next. With some offers in the Wine Industry and some in Sport, I kept coming back to the same idea. During the last seven years in the industry I have seen so many smaller producers with amazing wines and stories behind the brands, but with no one to help and guide the brand. The main cause was that these wineries didn’t have the money and in many instances it is run by a passionate winemaker who doesn’t always have the time.
I started talking to some friends who were winemakers at smaller Wineries or made their own wines and the need just became clearer and clearer. The idea is to build up a portfolio of producers who shares the same characteristics. It is not about the region where they grow their grapes, but more about their vision and passion for their wines. During my time at Rietvallei Estate I never doubted the quality of the wines that I worked with and the Estate has an amazing history and tradition. The Estate Wines as well as John B grew amazingly well and I believe that the brands are known and pretty strong. Now it is about taking a small producer to the market and finding the correct channels to promote and sell their wines.

The landscape of the South African Wine Retail market has changed dramatically in the last couple of years, but unfortunately also the On-Trade Market. I do believe that there is a place in the market for small, unknown Top Quality producers. There are many consumers looking for something different, not main stream but good quality and it is this market segment that needs to be targeted.  Working with retailers and restaurants who share our philosophy and passion is going to be tough, but I am sure we can make it.

So which wineries am I working with? Lemberg Estate (Tulbagh), Arendsig Hand-Crafted Wines (Robertson) and Vierkoppen Wines (made by Kobus Burger). None of these brands are competing at any level, but rather complimenting each other with the wines, volume produced and price points. It is important to me that I am confident with the quality produced and where they fit into the market. More importantly is that we all share the same vision, opinions on the marketplace and goals. There are a couple more wineries that I am in discussions with, but nothing has been confirmed yet.

It is going to be quite a daunting task, but something that I am extremely excited about and look forward to for 2012. We are all confident and optimistic that these brands will have great success next year and in years to come.  Keep your eyes and ears open ladies and gents. You will be drinking some amazing wines in 2012.

Colyn Truter
Marketing & Brand Consultant

Twitter:   colyntruter


  1. Best of luck - I look forward to hearing more! Only know (and like) Arendsig but have heard good things about the others too.

  2. Good luck Colyn. Taking this step isn't easy, but I believe you are on the right path. There is a serious need for decent representation amongst smaller producers who passionately vinify top quality wines.
    Rusticus Vintage Cellar

  3. Check these okes out: