Joining us for the 2020 Pinot Noir Celebration is the acclaimed Higgo Jacobs, Miguel Chan and Rosa Kruger. They'll entice us with their wine knowledge and each moderate a panel tasting in our respective Hemel-en-Aarde appellations when tasting through the current vintage Hemel-en-Aarde Pinot Noirs with their winemakers.
A law graduate from Stellenbosch, Higgo was lured into the wine industry after his studies, and what was meant to be a sabbatical ended up as a way of life. Certified with the Court of Master Sommeliers, Higgo consults to various establishments; judges on wine competitions and publications locally and abroad, and tries his hand occasionally at writing.
Mauritius-born Miguel trained in food & beverage operations and worked at various hotels in Mauritius before moving to South Africa in 2003. Certified by the Court of Master Sommeliers, he is also a taster for the Trophy Wine Show, Classic Wine Trophy and Wine magazine. Based in Gauteng, where he is group sommelier for Southern Sun hotels, Miguel writes his own blog for sommeliers.
Rosa Kruger is one of the world’s leading viticulturists, although she has no formal training and prefers the term ‘vineyard manager’. She started life as a political journalist, then became a lawyer before finally finding her life’s calling by chance when managing an apple orchard in a cool climate area that was touted as suitable for vineyards. With her characteristic sense of adventure she decided to give it a go.
Passionate, determined, generous and very focused, she has become one of the key figures in the renaissance of South Africa’s wine industry, travelling more than 6000 km a month to look at vineyards. She works for a handful of wineries but gives free advice to countless more, connecting winemakers with remarkable sites. “They have to have integrity,” she says. “I have to trust them and they must be really good winemakers.”