The organization unveils two initiatives to reach consumers and support sommeliers
New York, NY, June 11, 2020 – Wines of South Africa (WOSA) USA, the industry association that promotes the exports of South African wine, is proud to announce the launch of two initiatives aimed to offer continued education and awareness of South African wines, as well as support out-of-work sommeliers: the Wines of South Africa Podcast and WOSA Somm Sessions. The latter offers consumers a sommelier-led virtual tasting experience geared to their own tastes and selection of South African wines.
“Normally I spend the first half of the year traveling the U.S. teaching people about South African wine,” states Jim Clarke, WOSA USA Marketing Manager. “That hasn’t been possible this year, of course, but people’s interest in South African wine is still going strong. So, we’ve worked to find new ways to show off the country’s diverse range of wines and satisfy that curiosity.”
The Wines of South Africa Podcast runs bi-weekly, covering a different aspect of the South African wine scene with each episode. Clarke interviews different members of the South African wine industry and its advocates, including winery owners, winemakers, importers and sommeliers. The first episodes have explored Méthode Cap Classique, the country’s signature sparkling wine; the Swartland wine region; Stellenbosch and its flag-bearer variety, Cabernet Sauvignon; and Pinotage, respectively. Upcoming episodes include Chenin Blanc, to be released on June 19, just in time for International #DrinkChenin Day on June 20, and the Hemel-en-Aarde wine region, released on July 3. Future episodes will focus on the Constantia wine region, Old-Vine wines, and Chardonnay.
“Feedback on the podcast has been great,” Clarke says. “I think the format gives us room to include interesting information for casual wine drinkers as well as dive into deeper levels of wine geekery. The intricacies of fermenting Pinotage can be daunting, for example, but being able to tap into the mind of someone like Abrie Beeslaar from Kanonkop can go a long way in helping people understand and appreciate the grape and the wines. Our listenership keeps growing, and many go back to check out earlier episodes. Aside from U.S. listeners, we have tapped into South African wine fans all over the world.”
The Wines of South Africa Podcast is available via the Wines of South Africa USA website, and on all major podcast apps, such as Apple, Google, iHeartRadio, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, etc.
The WOSA Somm Sessions offer consumers the opportunity to host a personalized South African wine tasting among friends, guided by a sommelier. With this initiative, consumers can explore the diverse set of wines South Africa has on offer, and give an out-of-work sommelier a chance to put their skills to work. Once wines are purchased and a group has a designated time to meet, WOSA will pair them with a sommelier for an hour-long tasting.
Sign-up forms to arrange a WOSA Somm Session can be found on the Wines of South Africa USA website. Sommeliers interested in leading a WOSA Somm Session are instructed to email Marketing Manager Jim Clarke at [email protected] for details on the program and compensation.
About Wines of South Africa
Wines of South Africa (WOSA) is the organization representing all South African producers of wine who export their products. WOSA, which was established in its current form in 1999, has over 500 exporters on its database, comprising all the major South African wine exporters. It is constituted as a not-for-profit company and is totally independent of any producer, wholesaling company or government department but is recognized by the South African Export Council. WOSA’s mandate is to promote the export of all South African wines in key international markets including the United States.