Stellenbosch in the Western Cape has been given the prestigious Wine Town of the Year Award for 2011 by the influential Swedish wine club Munsk�nkarna, the first time this honour has gone to a wine region outside of the European Union.
Munsk�nkarna, a wine club with over 22�000 active members based in Sweden, Finland and Spain, is highly influential among Sweden’s wine consumers. Club members tend to spend more money on wine than the average consumer, and they are looked upon as wine experts in their own social networks.
“We are very proud to have been chosen by Munsk�nkarna,” Stellenbosch Wine Routes CEO Annareth Bolton said in a statement last week. “South Africa currently holds 20.5% of the market share in the Swedish wine market, making us the largest exporter to their country.”
Munsk�nkarna’s board members took part in a week-long tour of Stellenbosch’s winelands last week, visiting some of the region’s top wineries, tasting wines with award-winning winemakers and exploring the diverse cuisine on offer at the region’s restaurants � all against the backdrop of the breathtakingly beautiful vineyards of the Western Cape.
“We expect many more groups and visitors to our area, and we look forward to showcasing our exceptional quality wines and tourism offerings,” Bolton said.