South African wine is in turmoil. The government has banned the sale and export of wine as part of its strict coronavirus lockdown and, while restrictions will eventually be eased, Cape producers are in shock: reeling from the long-term effects and implications of this dramatic intervention. Yet they also remain remarkably positive and resilient.

In this extended special edition Wine Survival Guide, we hear the views of three producers – Kathy Jordan (Jordan), Charles Back (Fairview) and Andrea Mullineux (Mullineux and Leeu Family) at what is a critical and challenging time. There’s also time for a quick BBQ (braai, Cape style) complete with a mouth-watering line-up of South African wines.

‘We’ve had a month’s pause. But we’ve been making wine for 360-odd years… Any longer than a month, though, and it would ruin the industry.’ Charles Back

Running order

  • Introduction: 0 – 2.42
  • Wines for a braai (BBQ): 2.43 – 8.55
  • Interview with Kathy Jordan: 12.24 – 18.30
  • Interview with Charles Back: 20.08 – 27.01
  • Interview with Andrea Mullineux: 27.53 – 31.20
  • END: 32.41

‘You have to stay positive. Nothing’s always good or always bad. We have to get through it.’ Kathy Jordan


How have you been affected? ‘10% of our year…has gone.’ Andrea Mullineux

Featured wines

  • Newton Johnson Pinot Noir 2017, Walker Bay, 13.5% (£16)
  • Meerlust Rubicon 2009, Stellenbosch, 14.5% (£25-50)
  • Paul Cluver Noble Late Harvest Riesling 2014, Elgin, 11% (£20 for half)


  • NB: Wines of South Africa announced on 29th April that exports would be allowed from 1st May 2020.
  • What are your Top 3 White Wine Grape Varieties?! As we hear in this episode, Susie’s are Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling. Peter’s are Chardonnay, Riesling and Assyrtiko. Let us know what yours are – be controversial! Send us in a short voice message (as below) or give us a shout on Instagram or Twitter.
  • Some new phrases we learnt from making this episode: Bring and Braai. Chop and dop. The latter is apparently a BBQ in which the drink is more important than the food. Sounds worryingly familiar.
  • We learn that the Jordans are planting Assyrtiko on the hills of their Stellenbosch wine estate (and they will also be shortly releasing an English gin and sparkling wine from their property in Sussex).
  • Susie thinks the deliciously sweet Paul Cluver Riesling would go brilliantly with…good old-fashioned crêpes suzette.

What are YOUR Top 3 White Grapes?!

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