Auction of 1st Vermentino produced in South Africa by Ayama Wines

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

Italians Michela & Attilio Dalpiaz came to South Africa more than 10 years ago and bought a farm on the Paardeberg slopes, and called it Ayama.

It took years of planning and admin, but eventually their plans to bring a little bit of Italy to South Africa came to fruition when they planted some on the farm in 2014, and on Friday 16th June (Youth Day), Ayama auctioned off their first yield, the 2015 wines - only 1500litres.

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) , raised 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 and is proud as punch to have been so integral to the entire process.

There was a parallel online auction held on the same day, and I am sure it will have raised a similar figure!

The label and branding is really beautiful, with that Italian style and design certainly showing itself off.

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

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. I wish I could have stayed longer, but life called...