1. Tell us a little more about Groote Post.
Groote Post is a historic 18th-century farm on the Cape West Coast where winemaking traditions are revived by the Pentz family. We are currently three Pentz generations together on the farm: me, my father, and my grandfather. Distinctive aspects and cool climatic conditions of the Darling Hills produce excellent fruit for our wine range. Our wines are produced to reflect the uniqueness of our vineyards. We offer wine tastings, game drives, picnics, nature walks and lunch at Hilda's Kitchen.
2. What excites you about your job every day?
The opportunity to live out my passions every day and work in an industry that is so diverse and dynamic. Those who know usually say: "Do what you love and you will never have to work a day in your life." I do this daily. Otherwise, I also get the daily opportunity to create and meet new people and forge bonds. It is truly a privilege.
3. What lessons have you learned from the past few challenging years?
Definitely that everything can change in the blink of an eye, but also that you must be able to face challenges and turn them into opportunities. You have to be creative in your daily trading and approach things from all sides and then see how you can make it work. In the past year, our industry's resilience has been well demonstrated. We can truly overcome any challenge.
4. How do you currently manage the impact of load shedding on the cellar and wine tasting room's operational activities?
Electricity is the new curse word in our business. It dominates most of our society's conversations at the moment and frustrates everyone, but it is a process that we have to manage. Fortunately, we have generators that keep the tasting room and cellar running when load shedding is applied, but of course this pushes up your operational costs quite a bit. Alternative power solutions such as solar and wind energy are certainly workable, but the initial costs remain high.
5. Your message to wine businesses about the way forward?
Despite all the negatives, the future for our industry remains bright. The power is in our hands to make a difference and make things happen. There are so many opportunities that have yet to be exploited and our wine industry is full of innovative creators who will take the South African wine landscape to even greater heights. Stay positive and keep working on the special industry of ours.
The article was originally published, in Afrikaans, on Vinpro's website: https://vinpro.co.za/5-vrae-