Ayama produces first Vermentino in South Africa

Italians Michela and Attilio Dalpiaz bought a farm on the Paardeberg, which they named Ayama, bringing more than their own Italian genes to South Africa!

It takes much patience and perseverance to bring a new grape variety into South Africa, and I applaud the Dalpiaz family by persisting, and planted the Vermentino vineyards on Ayama in 2014, bringing their own little bit of Italy to the winelands. Their first harvest of note was in 2015, and the small batch of 1500 litres was aptly auctioned off on Youth Day, Friday 16th June 2017,  to raise funds for our young children in the winelands.

Vermentino is a grape variety grown mostly in Italy, viz in Liguria, Corsica and Sardinia, with almost Sauvignon Blanc characteristics.

The auction was held in a quaint church studio in Woodstock, with trendy young black auctioneer Kwanele Boltina (yes there are some Italian roots there), raising well over R90 000, with 40% going to the farm preschool called Perdjie, which currently serves Ayama and Scali wine farms. There are plans to expand as there is such a demand for preschool facilities in the farming area on the Perdeberg.
The auction was attended well by the Italian community, who were also involved and included in the planting in 2014.
The Bottega family from Idiom were there, and Georgio dalla Cia and his family and of course the wines were made on Morgenster, property of a very well-known Italian wine personality, Giulio Bertrand.  Henry Kotze, winemaker at Morgenster, was effusing about the wine, which of course he made; "I can assure you this is a wonderful wine''! Henry is proud as punch!

There was a parallel online auction held on the same day, and I look forward to hearing how much it raised.

The label and branding is really beautiful, being inspired by the image of the fermenting wine, which had the added benefit of being exposed to wonderful classical music during the fermentation process.

Thank you to them also for hosting a fabulous extended Italian lunch just up the road on Roodebloem Road at the authentic Italian restaurant, Pesce Azzurro, where we were spoilt with copious courses of delicious and finger-licking seafood.

Well done to Michela and her very able and passionate team at Ayama!


Ayama Vermentino gavel

Ayama Vermentino auction - beautiful packaging

Henry Kotze - winemaker

Michela Dalpiaz & auctioneer Kwanele Boltina

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