Veritas Living Legends Awards 2022

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Veritas Living Legends Awards 2022

Veritas Living Legends Awards 2022

The tradition of annually honouring a handful of industry leaders was continued at this year’s 32nd Veritas Awards ceremony, known for many years as the Oscars of the Wine Industry, on Saturday 08 October. This award, instituted by the Veritas Awards in 2009, serves as recognition for exemplary service to the industry over the years – acknowledging their commitment and paying homage for remarkable achievements. 

Thereby, seven luminaries received the 2022 Living Legends Scroll of Honour for their dedication to and enthusiasm and passion for the domestic wine and brandy industries. 


Peet is a native of Vredendal and after his defence force training completed his studies in Agriculture at the University of Pretoria. He then started service at the Department of Agricultural Economics and Marketing in Cape Town, working mainly in the fruit export industry at the Directorate of Inspection Services.

After 11 years he got a transfer to the Directorate of Liquor Control’s Department of Inspection Services of the Department of Agriculture at Nietvoorbij outside Stellenbosch.

With the establishment of the Wine and Spirit Board in July 1990, he accepted the post of the Board’s deputy-secretary and financial manager and helped to set up the offices of this newly founded Board in Stellenbosch.

Over the years, he served in several wine industry working groups and committees, which would lead to changes in the Wine of Origin Scheme, as well as the creation of the IPW Scheme as it exists today.

As one of the mainstays behind the scenes at the Wine and Spirit Board, he made an immense contribution over 32 years to develop this industry organisation to a world leader which enjoys international recognition for one of the best wine of origin systems. It is most appropriate that Peet, who retired earlier this year, receives this Living Legend scroll shortly before the establishment of the Wine of Origin System 50 years ago in 1973, is celebrated.

Dear Peet, we gladly give recognition for your exemplary work with this Living Legend Scroll of Honour! 


Michael Fridjhon has spent his entire career in wine consultancy, judging and writing and is an internationally acknowledged South African wine journalist.

Brought up in Johannesburg, and with wine being part of the family lifestyle, he was already quite knowledgeable about the subject by the time he was in matric. When studying at Wits, he did holiday work with Benny Goldberg’s Liquor Supermarket in the wine section, where he was later employed full-time during honours studies.

He then visited Montpellier in France to enhance his wine knowledge and did brief internships in Burgundy and Bordeaux.

Back in South Africa in 1976, he became imports director of Benny Goldberg’s. In addition to managing the imported wine purchases his responsibilities covered marketing, creation and blending of house brands, shipping and logistics.

By 1979, while doing a Master’s degree, he continued part-time with Goldberg’s while setting up a liquor consultancy, which included Pernod-Ricard International as client. At the same time, he became a shareholder in The Reciprocal Wine Company, and in the wine export and distribution business, Constantia Negociants.

His first column appeared in the Financial Mail in 1976 and in the Rand Daily Mail (later Business Day) in 1980.

In the 80s, he became the wine consultant to Sotheby’s, thereby acting as the advisor for the first Cape Independent Winemakers’ Guild sales.

In 1989, he sold Constantia Negociants and focused on consulting and writing after co-authoring the Conspiracy of Giants book, his Penguin Book of South African Wine followed in the early 1990s.

In 1994, he took over the SAA wine selection and continued managing the process until 2001. Meanwhile, he had been judging wine – for Diners Club, Veritas, Australian Capital and other shows over many years – in addition to competitions in the USA, Chile, France and the UK. He was the first international co-chairman of the International Wine Challenge in the UK in 2007.

In 1996 he was honoured by the French Government with the award Chevalier de l’Ordre de Merite Agricole.

He later acted for the Minister of Agriculture in the negotiations leading to the creation of the SA Wine Industry Trust under his chairmanship.

In 2000, he took over the Business Day Wine Festival and transformed it into the highly successful WineX and in 2002 launched the Trophy Wine Show in partnership with Wine Magazine.

In 2007, he became Visiting Professor of Wine Business at the UCT Graduate School of Business.

In 2020, Fridjhon partnered in an enterprise called Vinosphere Inc to enhance the presence of Cape wine in the USA.

As a professional and highly skilled wine taster, one of the finest wine journalists in the world, accomplished public speaker and ambassador for South African wine, we have great pleasure to present the Wine Legend Scroll to Michael.


Johann Krige is a Stellenbosch product through and through. He was born on Kanonkop, spent his school years at Paul Roos Gimnasium and thereafter completed his studies at the University of Stellenbosch – obtaining his BA LLB degree, as well as an MBA at the US.

As a wine farmer’s son, a career in the wine world was a natural path for him. He first acquired knowledge in KWV’s legal department before returning to Kanonkop.

While taking over the reins at Kanonkop as fourth generation owner, he also did pioneering work in the industry. Johann was a board member of Wosa for 27 years, occupying the chairman’s seat for a term. During this time, he was also involved with Vinpro for 15 years and acted as vice-chairman.

He was also elected as member of the KWV Board, where he played a key role with major changes. Also in the Stellenbosch Wine Route Association, where he proved his mettle as chairperson over a lengthy period.

His versatility also led to him being appointed as vice-chairman of Sawis, a cornerstone organisation of the wine industry. He was also chosen as a trustee by SAWIT (SA Wine Industry Trust) and the Cape Wine Makers’ Guild Trust. He was also a board member of Swartland Cellar.

With his vision to position Kanonkop as one of South Africa’s foremost wineries, Johann as director and CEO and his team at Kanonkop makes the spot-on decisions and he and his winemakers rake in awards worldwide.

He can justifiably be proud that Kanonkop takes its place alongside the big names in the wine industry worldwide. During his term, Kanonkop clinched the title as International Winemaker of the Year four times, as well as the best producer over 50 years at the International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) in 2019.

It was a great moment in Johann’s career when earlier this year he was elected as only the second South African to be the President of the IWSC – one of the oldest wine shows in the world, based in London.

Moreover, we received the wonderful news a few days ago that Kanonkop was named as the Best Red Wine Producer at this year’s IWSC. Our heartiest congratulations, Johann!

You are a notable example of a true Living Legend with your immense contribution to our industry! 


Angela’s wine writing career started 40 years ago in 1983 with a popular monthly subscriber newsletter for the Cape Wine Centre or Drop Inn.

A tasting on the subject Blanc de Noir & Rosé – is there a place for both in the market? –  got Angela her first writing gig in the then Wynboer magazine, today WineLand. Wide-ranging in-depth and sometimes controversial articles followed over the years, including “London in Retrospect” – South Africa’s first showing since the Mandela release.

She was the first to broadcast locally about wine on radio, for Woman’s Hour in 1992 – 1995, writing the scripts and pre-recording. Further live radio work with Cape Talk followed.

A favourite commission was the monthly Taste Match for Sunday Life from 1996 to 1998. This involved a taste-off between foreign and local wines, with a blind tasting and guest celebrity discussion, also reviewing wines, both local and foreign.One of her greatest achievements is the wine tasting and describing for the Platter’s Wine Guide that has spanned no less than 37 years, from 1986 to date.

She also wrote wine for the Cape Times Funfinder in 1984 – 1986; the Signature – Diners Club magazine in 1988 – 1991; Wine magazine, 1993 – 2011 and a monthly article for Wines of South Africa from 2004 onwards.

Her own blog, namely, has been running since 2009. In addition to doing several local once-offs, a highlight was winning the short format story category of the Franschhoek Literary Wine Awards.

Internationally, Angela wrote travel features for the UK’s Decanter magazine in 2012 – 2021; and, from 2004 onwards, for the Wine Enthusiast in the USA, interviewing big names in wine, as well as travel features, wine and food with chefs and sommeliers, and Covid and the SA alcohol ban.

In 1995 – 2015, she was the South African contributor for the Oz Clarke Pocket Wine Book & Microsoft Wine Guide by Websters Publishers. She also researched and wrote the South African sections for the Dorling Kindersley Wines of the World 2003 and Thomson Delmar Learning – About Wine South Africa, in 2005.

Well-known in South African and international wine circles, Angela Lloyd is an eminently versatile and superb wine writer and thoroughly deserves this Living Legend Award!


One of the most colourful personalities in our wine industry, Olla Olivier was born and bred in the Karoo town, Prieska. He finished his high school years at Paul Roos Gimnasium and visited a wine farm or two … and that’s what sparked his imagination.

After his military service at the Military Gimnasium in Pretoria, he joined the Maties in 1965 for a degree in Viticulture and Oenology.

He started work as extension officer for the former Dried Fruit Board in Upington and became assistant-winemaker for Orange River Wine Cellars in Upington in 1972.

Two years later Olla was appointed as cellarmaster by Romans River Wine Cellar outside Wolseley, where he was at the helm of business for 21 years. He regularly travelled overseas and spent two harvesting work stints in Germany, respectively at Breisach and Weinsberg.

Locally, he judged at an early stage at the SA Young Wine Shows. His long-standing connection with the Pinotage Association, as it exists today, also started in those years when Prof Joel Van Wyk involved him as a judge for the Pinotage competition. He has also tasted a few times on the panel for SAA wines.

In 1986 Olla successfully completed the Senior Management Programme for the US Business School.

From 1996 he became production manager for Swartland Wine Cellar near Malmesbury, shortly after them starting to export bottled wine to the United Kingdom and Europe in 1995 – which was a new terrain and fascinating challenge to encounter their strict quality requirements.

To “keep busy” after his retirement and to still express his intense interest in the South African wine industry on a daily basis, joined Clear Mountain Wines in the year 2000, a company licenced to buy and sell bulk wine, among others. And 50 years later he is still involved with wine!

Well done, Living Legend Olla Olivier with a lifetime in the industry!


Beyers Truter’s achievements span 31 years since graduating with a BSc Agric degree from the University of Stellenbosch, starting his winemaking career at Kanonkop in 1981 and then on his own estate Beyerskloof in Stellenbosch, where today his son, Anri, carries on the family winemaking tradition and daughter Corné manages the eatery.

Truter’s focus was directed at making, promoting and elevating the South African variety Pinotage to premium wine status, capable of standing alongside other great red wines of the world.

He is the long-time chairperson of the Pinotage Association, which he founded in 1995. He has served as chairperson and on the executive committee for many years. His dedication to Pinotage has earned him the titles of Mr Pinotage, the Prince of Pinotage and Pinotage King.

His most recent awards were the 1659 Award for Visionary Leadership at the 10th annual Wine Harvest Commemorative event in February 2021 and the Wine Personality of the Year Award by the Institute of Cape Wine Masters in 2022. This was to ‘’mark his demonstrable efforts and initiatives that have benefitted the South African wine industry, leaving a lasting impact and legacy and encouraging and inspiring others within the industry. Beyers has played a vital role in educating consumers in South Africa and around the world on the red wine he so dearly loves – Pinotage.’’

Truter won the 1987 Diners Club Winemaker of the year for Pinotage and is the unsurpassed eight-time winner of the Pinotage Top Ten Competition, also winning numerous awards and trophies over the years. These included the International Wine and Spirit Competition: the Robert Mondavi Trophy for International Winemaker of the Year in 1991; the Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande Trophy for the best blended red wine, the iconic Paul Sauer 1991 Bordeaux blend, in 1994 and 1999; the IWSC Perold Trophy for the best Pinotage in 1997, 2000, 2001 and 2008; the Warren Winiarski Trophy for the best Cabernet Sauvignon in 1998; and the Dave Hughes Trophy – for best South African red wine in 1999 and for the best South African producer in 2003.

Other accolades include awards at the International Wine Challenge, London, the Classic Wine Trophy for Air France, the Internationale Wein Praemierung (IWPZ) in Zürich, the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles, and the Veritas Awards in South Africa.

A career full of amazing achievements as a winemaker, an unsurpassed passion for Pinotage and a storyteller and singer of note, this is Beyers Truter, a remarkable and splendid Living Legend in our industry!


If there is one man known as Mr Wine Show in South Africa, it is Johannes van Willing! This polite, friendly and sincere man has served our wine industry’s wine shows for almost 45 years!

He was permanently appointed by KWV as administrative assistant/motor vehicle driver in 1977 and then worked for the famous Madder Botha – where he also started working at wine shows.

After Madder’s death, the well-known Wilna King with her mild nature, was his manager for a few years. When she left with the birth of her son in 1985, Elsabé Ferreira took over the department’s reins.

At the start of 1986, Johannes was promoted to administration assistant and a few months later, he became senior services officer. Together with Elsabé, Johannes became the mainstay of the country’s wine shows. In 1990 the Veritas Awards were introduced, doubling his duties. In 1994, Johannes was appointed as Winelands officer. In those years, the division was known as the Winelands Department. Then Johannes became an even more familiar face at wine shows throughout the winelands.

From 2003, Johannes joined Vinpro, with the title promotions officer. Considerable change took place during this period, especially with regard to the wine shows – the manner of operations, innovations introduced, as well as processes implemented to simplify tasks and adapt to changed circumstances.

Through it all Johannes, with his broad knowledge of show and judging organisation, has always been a mainstay and a right-hand.

He decided to retire early in 2009 from Vinpro, but he immediately fell in with Elsabé Ferreira’s promotions company, ElPro, on a contract basis. Elsabé realises that Johannes, with his valuable knowledge of all in the industry and insight about competitions and arrangement thereof, is of immeasurable value.

ElPro has managed several shows and other wine tastings where Johannes delivered invaluable work. During this time, he was responsible for comprehensive logistical arrangements for judging and wine tasting for Veritas countrywide and accompanied tours to present wine tastings in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban.

At the end of last year, Johannes decided to take things easier and finally retired. However, he still came to lend a hand with judging sessions.

Johannes van Willing, one of the quiet giants of the wine industry, you deserve the honour as Living Legend through and through! 

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Contact Bennie Howard Vice Chairman or Elsabe Ferreira, GM