My travels in Asia last month included visiting the bustling mega-city of Jakarta, capital of Indonesia, where we attended a trade show. We enjoyed a phenomenal reception for Avondale wines in this island country of 200 million people where the wine market is still in a developing phase. Like many emerging wine markets, there is a keen focus on red wines and bubbles; as well as a refreshing attitude to wine culture and the openness to explore and experience wines without preconceptions. There is an incredible energy in Jakarta, and a veritable melting pot of cultures that include Indian, Far Eastern and European influences. The greater metropolis of Jakarta is home to an estimated 28 million people, making it one of the most populous cities of the world. It is extraordinarily crowded and congested with an overwhelmed transportation system and lots of land, air and water pollution. Jakarta was established in the 4th Century and was a significant trading port for Kingdom of Sunda. Later, it served as the most notable settlement of Dutch East Indies, and became Indonesia’s capital city since independence in 1945. From street vendors to upmarket restaurants, the food reflects the diversity of cultural influences. Of course, there is lots of delicious spicy food on offer, plenty of curries and fermented vegetarian dishes – all of which would be excellently complemented by Avondale’s Cyclus, Samsara, Camissa and Anima.
As family man… Avondale is a family farm where we appreciate that the health and balance of our living system is inextricably linked to well-being of our families. As a father of two and a husband, as son and brother, my inspiration to achieve a robust, balanced vineyard ecosystem is to ensure that Avondale will support the lives of our future generations.
As artist… A passion for jazz and a love for all forms of art, especially woodwork and sculpture led me into four years of fine art studies – an eclectic education for a budding a farmer, for sure! However, I have found that in so many ways, the patterns, interconnections and openness of the artistic worldview have influenced my understanding of how living systems work.
As farmer… My interest in farming started early when I was a boy growing up on a small-holding outside of Durbanville. I planted and tended my own vegetables which I sold to family and friends. I hardly imagined at that time though that I would one day become a farmer. However, the theme of a healthy balanced life was embedded in our family’s outlook.