South African wine industry welcomes the world at Concours Mondial du Sauvignon

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase our spectacular country, our unique winemaking community and our wonderful Sauvignon Blanc on an international stage is around the corner.

Albeit a challenging time for the South African wine industry, the excitement of hosting the biggest and most prestigious Sauvignon Blanc competition in the world for the first time ever in a New World Country, on African and specifically South African soil, is tangible.

“This is a dream come true,” says RJ Botha, Chairman of Sauvignon Blanc South Africa. “We started negotiations four years ago with Quentin Havaux, Director of the Concours Mondial du Sauvignon. After months and months of discussions, bringing partners on board, and making almost impossible plans, we are reaping the fruit of our labour. It’s here. It’s now. What a wonderful opportunity for our cultivar organisation, our wine industry, and our country, to showcase our resilience, excellence and Mzansi magic.”


The Concours Mondial du Sauvignon will take place at Le Franschhoek Hotel and Spa in Franschhoek from Monday 13 March to Friday 17 March. Judging will take place over three days and the results will be announced on Monday 20 March 2023 in Düsseldorf, Germany, at Prowein, the only international trade fair that covers the complete global market.

More than 1 000 Sauvignon Blanc wines will compete for the attention of 50 judges of which 40 are international and 10 are local wine experts. A handpicked trade-only panel from around the world, the esteemed tasters include Andrea Amadei, journalist at Decanter from Italy, Jean Smullen, journalist and wine event manager from Ireland, wine writer Paula Sidore from Germany, Peter De Leeuw, MD of Kaapwijn Import De Leeuw in Belgium, Christophe Bourgeois, wine producer in France, Daphne Teremetz, wine buyer at Waitrose Great Britain, and Stefan Potzinger, President of the Austrian Wine Association. The rest of the international contingent hail from Brazil, Croatia, Denmark, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Austria, France, Germany, Belgium, Great Britain and the United States (full list at

Renowned SA judges joining the panel are Cape Wine Masters Dr Winnie Bowman and René Groenewald, as well as Heidi Duminy, Francois Rautenbach, Dr Carien Coetzee, Cathy Marston, Christian Eedes, Fiona McDonald, Joseph Dhafana, and Malu Lambert. During this competition, South Africa’s exciting Sauvignon Blanc regions will also be showcased through daily excursions to Durbanville, Constantia and Stellenbosch, and with special dinners hosted by Diemersdal, Groot Constantia, and Vergelegen.

Bringing this competition to home soil was no mean feat. “Collective support from the industry was instrumental in making this bid a reality,” says Botha. “We are extremely thankful for the support of our platinum partners, Vinventions, Concours Mondial de Bruxelles (handling the technical organisation of the tastings), the National Convention Bureau and WESGRO, and our bronze partners Boutes, Tonnellerie Garonnaise, Tonnellerie Sylvain, Enartis, Beveratech, FNB, Porex, Hillebrand GORI, and Anchor Yeast, as well as all other event and media partners.

“This is a wonderful platform for all our partners to be part of a positive brand South Africa story. Thank you for collaborating to showcase the best South Africa has to offer.”


Although Concours Mondial is a trade-only competition, good news for Sauvignon Blanc enthusiasts is that a Sauvignon Safari will be hosted in the Cape Winelands as part of the International Sauvignon Blanc Day celebrations during May 2023. The Sauvignon Safari will be an interactive Around the World experience of Sauvignon Blanc, including a tasting of participating Concours competing wines, as well as trophy, gold and silver medal winners, as announced in collaboration with Wines of South Africa (WoSA) at Prowein on Monday 20 March in Düsseldorf, Germany, and online at

Follow Sauvignon Blanc SA on Twitter as @SauvignonSA and on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn as @sauvignonblancsa, and join the conversation with #CMSauvignon and #SauvignonBlancSA.  For more information, visit or contact Sauvignon Blanc SA at or 082 808 1114 for more information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *