By training, I am a mining engineer and business economist – but I have known since my university times that after an unavoidable period of work in the corporate world I would turn to the natural resources of this earth in another way. My early fascination was with wine, and how wine understands to bring together nature and humans and humans with humans. So, already as a twen I was looking for a place that would make up at least the second half of my professional life, where I would practice viticulture and viniculture, but also provide food, lodging and harbourage for serious exchange of ideas and happy escapades with friends and family. The plan was not to drop out of professional life, but to fundamentally switch, and when I finally read the sales advertisement for that agriculturally undeveloped limestone lentil after years of searching, I travelled to the Cape for the first time in my life. And Springfontein has never let me go since then. I love challenges, and one of them was certainly to start a wine farm on a greenfield site or, as here, on feral bushland. Had I known at the time what was waiting for me, I probably would have stayed away. From today’s perspective, it was the best that could ever happen to me, especially since in Tariro I have found a friend and a kindred spirit, with whom working together is just a pleasure. My special task is to bring the essential threads together, to hold them together and to strategically position the whole tangle of these threads in such a way that the farm can continue to develop sustainably whilst the original idea of what Springfontein should be is never lost and can be expanded, long term, in a pan-African way.
My curiosity for Science and Mathematics led me into the path of making wine as a trainee in Zimbabwe, after studying Bsc. Chemistry and Biochemistry at University of Zimbabwe. Through a scholarship I studied Winemaking and Viticulture at Stellenbosch University where my passion for wine was nurtured. As fortune has it, my first years of making wine with Nederburg wines in Paarl brought me in contact with people who inspired me to join Springfontein Wine Estate in 2012. From the beginning I set out to work with the owners to make wines which are uniquely African, South African and Organic, through innovative experimentation both in the vineyards and cellar.
I was born and bred in Paarl, Western Cape- agriculture is deeply rooted in my upbringing and soul. I hold a master degree in Horticulture and have experience in plant biotechnology, specialising in indigenous medicinal crops. With a dream of starting an own farming business, I tossed my laboratory coat when the opportunity arose in early 2013 to join a the dynamic Wine Farm. As a young professional, the brand and its vision spoke to me. Being a minimalist, conservationist and lover of all things organic, the Springfontein brand is one with me. I am currently completing a PhD thesis in Horticulture.
I was born in Burgundy – Chablis and raised in a wine estate. I studied International Business in London prior to earning an Advanced Master’s Degree in Wine Sciences and International Wine Trade at Dijon based Institut Nationale Supérieur des Sciences Agronomiques (AGROSUP). For several years I worked in China & Japan, started my own companies in France and West Africa before joining Springfontein as advisory partner in 2018, responsible for developing the pan-African business as well as the one in Europe, USA and Asia.
I am Albie du Toit. I was born and bred in Worcester on a wine farm. I am passionate about discovering different soils of the world and becoming one with it. I was given the opportunity to become part of this amazing team at Springfontein and to discover this unique soil. None other than Limestone rocks.
My passions are food, figures and fiction. I was born and raised in the concrete jungles of Johannesburg. After years of travelling the globe I arrived on this little “Island” Springfontein. Total Serendipity. Here we toast “Ulumbaza”, here the Limestone rocks to the heart of the Daredevil’s Drums. I am the Financial Manager at Springfontein Wine Estate.
My name is Mariska Kammies Bantom. I live on this beautiful wine Estate Springfontein with my husband and daughter. My journey on Springfontein started at the age of 10 years when my father was given the opportunity to become an employee of Springfontein. I am currently employed at Springfontein as a Junior Administrator. I see myself as an introvert, like our Terroir Selection & Single Vineyard wines. On the outside, the labels look simple, easy and approachable. The wines are not screaming at you from afar, but you can’t help to look. However, when you open the bottle and have a taste of it, you want to have more and more, because the wine is so elegant, soft and pleasant. Springfontein has given me the opportunity to become independent, grow and learn. I am extremely grateful for it.
My love for wine was aroused during my studies (business administration) in Frankfurt am Main through the father of my girlfriend at that time, a great Bordeaux lover by the way. During this time I got a slight idea of how valuable the subject of wine, would one day become to me. After my studies, I went to Bremen to work for 6 years as a sales manager for a well-established wine importer.
Just in time for the start of the new millennium, I founded Rebhof Weinhandel GmbH together with my friend Dr. Johst Weber, already at that time with the prospect of importing his South African wines to Germany together one day. For some years now we have been selling Springfontein Wine Estate wines with great enthusiasm on the German market in the segment of specialized wine trade. In addition, I support our European importers and partners in my function as Springfontein Ambassador at vinophile events, trade fairs etc.
I am Siphelele Mfini. I grew up in a rural area called Willowvale in Eastern Cape. While growing up, I was passionate about art, and it has always been my dream was to become a chef. I finished my matric in 2010. In 2011, I decided to move to Mfuleni in Western Cape, where I was looking to find greener pastures. Here I had the opportunity to study at CWA College in Eersterivier to become a chef. That’s when my dream finally became a reality. I moved to Stanford in 2013 and met Michelin star chef Mr Schneider, who offered me a position at Springfontein Eats and trained me more about being a chef. I am currently a chef at Ulumbaza Wine Barn at Springfontein Wine Estate.
I am Zinhle Makhetha. I grew up in the South of Durban. I am a mother of two beautiful children. I started working in the hospitality industry in 2005, mostly in fine dining restaurants. In 2010, I had the opportunity to work abroad in Dubai for 2 years. From a cultural and learning perspective this was a great experience for me. In 2014 I started working at Creation, where I had the opportunity to learn about wines and terroir. This was very interesting, and I worked at Creation until early 2019. Afterwards, I once again I had the opportunity to work abroad in the Seychelles, which again was an amazing experience. Here I also had the opportunity to learn about their culture. When returning to South Africa, I had to find my feet, so I applied for work at Springfontein Wine Estate. I am currently appointed as a Wine Ambassador at the Ulumbaza wine barn – HOUSE OF JOY…..
I am Caleb Claassen. I was born and raised in Port Nolloth. Port Nolloth is a town and small domestic seaport in the Namaqualand region on the north western coast of South Africa. Unfortunately, there are not a lot of opportunities for development in our small town, so I decided to move to the Western Cape and enrolled at Elsenburg College. Here I learned the techniques of making wines and working in the vineyard. After working at different wineries (including KWV), I received a great opportunity to become part of the unique Springfontein team. Here I get the opportunity to develop my passion and ambition for the love of agriculture. I am currently assisting the wine maker in the cellar, but also assist in the vineyard.
I am Brian Ntonya from Malawi and I have been appointed Springfontein’s as Head worker in the vineyards. I have always been passionate about farming, even though I studied communication. In fact, I have never worked in the media or communication field since graduating from the University of Malawi in 2010. In Malawi, I managed a farm which had 130 cattle and 20 hectares of Mangoes, Moringa and Neem trees. I decided to come work in South Africa and work on a farm, because I want to experience new challenges and learn a lot from the people. In my opinion, South Africa is a model country on the African continent.
I’m Reneisha Diedericks. I live in Stanford, where I am married and have two beautiful boys. They are my inspiration. I am ambitious, self-motivated and disciplined person, who has a good sense of humour. I have a positive mindset and am always grateful for the smallest things in life. I am goal-directed and will do my outmost best at any time. I’m eager to learn and willing to take every opportunity to make a change. I consider myself to be an honest and dedicated individual, because I believe honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom. My motto in life is work to hard, but to pray even harder. I have been appointed as Junior Clerk Administrator and am extremely excited for the journey that I will go on with Springfontein Wine Estate.
My full name is Mxolisi Simon Komsana. I live in Stanford but am originally from the Free State Bloemfontein. I am working at Springfontein as a General worker, so my tasks include assisting in the cellar, as well as in the vineyard. Springfontein has given me the opportunity to develop, grow and educate myself on many aspects that I never even knew of. Especially on the winemaking process and the different cultivars of grapes I gained a lot of knowledge. Also, I have learned how to drive a forklift and now have a licence to do so. I am grateful for the opportunity that I have been given at Springfontein. I have been working on the farm for 3 years.
I am John Maklein. I live in Stanford and have been given the opportunity to become part of a working team that is loving, caring and compassionate about their employees. I am a General worker at Springfontein. My tasks include to operate the tractors in the vineyard and to assist in the cellar. I am a Springfonteiner.