MCC makers must have swallowed their corks when they read the shameless plug for French Champagne on the front page of Rapport this morning. Bubbly Vania van der Heever quotes retailer Charles Kramer of Norman Goodfellows claiming that Veuve Cliquot sales are up 40% since 2010 while a large bottle store chain (which rules out Chas) says Moet is up 60% – probably on the back of the ANC order for Mangaung. Vania asked Su Birch, head of WOSA, wotsap? and Su replied “South Africans are becoming aware of French Champagne as a status symbol.” Surely not, Su? And what about MCC? Nothing. While Chas will be chuffed at the profits rolling in from French fizz, an industry that pays Su a fat salary would have expected a more positive spin. Hopeless.
Which is certainly not the case with the 2010 vintage Chateau Libertas, being modelled above by Daniel Toledo, the dashing Argentinian chef/patron at Il Leone in De Waterkant of Cape Town. What a treat to take a byo out that costs less than the corkage charge and then to have the corkage waived in any event and to be gifted a couple of grappa rutas, as well.
This Chateau is plush and fruity on the tongue with the faintest hint of greenness at the end that hints of Bordeaux seriosity. Of course Chateau will never become a status symbol and so will unlikely ever make the front page of Rapport. But then I’m betting it will be around for a lot longer than either WOSA or Rapport will.
Neil, you will surely be aware that the WOSA mandate is for overseas marketing. For all their perceived failings, you can’t hang this one on them. Nice try though.
When Rapport phoned, WOSA should have directed them to someone, anyone, who knows about wine. Pieter Ferreira, Jeff Grier, Johan Malan,… Comments from WOSA cause endless confusion and grief.
Hi John – there is a big market in Europe for MCC and importers would appreciate every small effort from WOSA but there is none…