Grape - From Slavery to BEE

Stories of the Vineyards in South Africa. By Jeanne Viall, Wilmot James & Jakes Gerwel (Tafelberg) ISBN 978-0-624-04938-8

 

What helps grapes to grow? The Cape Doctor. Why do grapes grow in a selected area? What is the difference between table grapes and wine grapes? All your questions are answered in this wonderful book about making wine.

 

You learn about the people who harvest the wine and have done so for centuries. You find out about the labour, land and housing issues. There are short stories and love stories about people who have been in the area that are amazing.  There are stories about the origin of pinotage, where the term "stokkiesdraai" comes from, and how the first canal was dug in Upington, also a big wine growing area.

 

Does the 'dop' system still exist?  What is going to happen to the vineyards when climate change occurs?  Read on.

 

You will find the journey through the vineyards fascinating. You end with the music of the wine people, the dancing, the singing, the partying till dawn. Despite quality wine-making today, most wine farmers struggle to make a profit. 

 

This story is about the resilient diverse people whose lives have revolved around the vineyards. It is a worthwhile read that you can learn from.

 

Dee Andrew

3/5

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