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Associate Judges


The Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show draws upon several of South Africa’s new-generation winemakers, all of whom have appropriate tasting experience. They are provided with the opportunity of working in a rigorous show-judging environment and learning from the international and local tasters to whom they are seconded. Associate judges work in the tasting room with the main panel and are invited to participate in the discussion, however their scores are not included in the final tally.

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    Johline Barnardt

    Van Loveren’s Export Sales Manager for the USA, Canada and South America and formerly Brand Ambassador for Vergelegen Wines.  Studied BSc Oenology majoring in Chemistry at the University of Stellenbosch and has worked several harvests locally and abroad.  Completed a post-graduate Diploma in Wine Business Management at UCT’s Graduate School of Business while working as Sales and Marketing manager at Vergenoegd Wine Estate. Distinction graduate of the Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy in 2013.  Trophy Wine Show associate judge in 2014.

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    Narina Cloete

    Assistant winemaker at Stellenzicht Vineyards.  An Honours BSc Agriculture (Oenology) cum laude graduate from Stellenbosch University. Completed harvests at Glen Carlou, Dornier, and AA Badenhorst Family Wines.  Joined Quoin Rock Winery in 2008 as assistant winemaker and was promoted to winemaker in 2010 until 2014.  She has served on judging panels of South Africa’s Young Wine Show, FNB Top 10 Sauvignon Blanc, the new Cape Vintners Classification, Blaauwklippen Blending Competition.  Distinction graduate of the Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy in 2013 and attended the advanced Wine Judging Academy in 2014.  Trophy Wine Show associate judge in 2013 and 2014.

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    Spencer Fondaumiere

    Kenyan-born Fondaumiere is manager and sommelier at Burrata Restaurant in Cape Town.  Began his career in hospitality at chef school and, an entrepreneur at heart, he started a catering company from his mother’s kitchen, which he ran for 7 years.  Has studied through the Cape Wine Academy and WSET and became the first sommelier to be certified in Africa through the South African Sommeliers Association (SASA).  Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy 2016 graduate.

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    Patson Mathonsi

    Eat Out and Mercedes-Benz Sommelier of the Year in 2014.   From coffee shop to Italian bistro his career in fine wine progressed with his appointment as Head Sommelier at DW11-13 Restaurant in Johannesburg and as sales representative at The Reciprocal Wine Trading since 2015.  Has completed the Cape Wine Academy Certificate in Wine and WSET Levels 1, 2 and 3.  He is a member of the Hugues Lepin Sommelier and Wine Academy.  Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy 2016 graduate.

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    Alexandra McFarlane

    Viticulturist at De Toren Private Cellar. Graduated in 2010 from the University of Stellenbosch with a BSc degree in Viticulture and Oenology.  Awarded the Dombeya Scholarship to work the 2011 Australian harvest in Margaret River and Barossa Valley. After returning to South Africa she took up the role as assistant winemaker at Mulderbosch.  Further international experience includes stints in the Napa Valley in 2012 and a return in 2013 to Australia for seasons at Kalleske Wines, Barossa Valley, and Henschke Wines, Eden Valley.  She has also worked at Dombeya and Waterkloof and more recently as Junior Winemaker at Spier.  Distinction graduate of the Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy in 2015.  Trophy Wine Show associate judge in 2015.

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    Samarie Smith

    Creator and editor of Versnit, the weekly Afrikaans wine supplement to Die Burger and Netwerk24.com. University of Stellenbosch graduate in Fine Art with a post-graduate in Journalism.  Completed the Cape Wine Academy Diploma and received the Certificate of Competence from the Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy in 2013.  Judge on panels for Veritas, Young Wine Show, Top 10 Pinotage, MCC Challenge, Top 6 Cabernet Franc, Top Muscadel, Novare Terroir Awards and Chenin Blanc Challenge.  In 2014 selected to represent South Africa in the World Blind-tasting Championships in France and joined Platter wine guide in 2016.

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    Laurie Smorthwaite

    Winemaker at Abingdon Wine Estate in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. WSET diploma graduate and member of the Associate Institute of Wines and Spirits (AWIS).   Accredited WSET educator, founder of the KZN School of Wine and a recipient of the Codorniu Raventos scholarship for achieving the top mark globally for the sparkling wine diploma module. SAA wines selection panellist and distinction graduate at Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy in 2016.

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    Jacques Steyn

    National Sales Manager for Jordan Wine Estate and a 2016 graduate of the Cape Wine Master programme. Also qualified in culinary arts, his previous work experience includes a stint as sommelier at Singita Private Game Reserves and Wine Ambassador at Delaire Graff Estate. Distinction graduate of the Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy in 2013 and Advanced Wine Judging Academy in 2014. Trophy Wine Show associate judge in 2013 and 2014.

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