Winning a Veritas medal after being blind tasted and judged by experienced and qualified experts is considered to be one of the industry’s most coveted expressions of outstanding quality. The Veritas double gold, gold, silver or bronze medal not merely translates to a pretty shiny sticker on a bottle, but to an acknowledged symbol of quality which draws the eye of the increasingly well informed consumer. The value of this competition in terms of marketing for established, and especially emerging brands, is widely recognized.
In 2010 brandy joined the line-up of the more than 1700 hopefuls that enter annually. Whereas South African brandies previously competed only at an international level, our country’s leading brandy masters can now compare their creations with those of their local peers.
Good news for participants is that the South African National Wine Show Association (SANWSA) that runs this competition has announced that there will be no increase in the entry fees for this year.
While the judging process takes place from 3-7 September those interested in the results will have to be patient until 6 October when the winners will be announced during a gala dinner at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC).
The recent election of Charles Hopkins as the new chairperson of the SANWSA heralds a period of renewal for the wine industry, especially in terms of the awards ceremony and the compilation of the tasting panels. “I would like to put greater emphasis on the transparency of the entire process,” says Hopkins, a leading cellar master, wine educator and judge. “People should really understand the process and take ownership thereof. I would also like to see younger faces, sommeliers and experts with a commercial background being included in the tasting panels.”