Jacobus van Zyl

Assistant Winemaker
Neethlingshof Wine Estate
Van Zyl graduated with a BSc in Agriculture (Viticulture and Oenology) from the University of Stellenbosch in 2012, following a passion for farming, and wine in particular, that began in his childhood.

Van Zyl graduated with a BSc in Agriculture (Viticulture and Oenology) from the University of Stellenbosch in 2012, following a passion for farming, and wine in particular, that began in his childhood.

He was raised on a farm in Rawsonville. “One of my favourite times was breakfast on the tractor during harvest with my dad; his sweet coffee and delicious scrambled egg sandwiches with tomato sauce. The tractors were loaded with grapes and I watched them off-load into the tanks. The smell of fermentation in the cellar was one I learnt to love back then.

He says wine was always part of his childhood home. “From a young age we were exposed to the culture of wine and how to enjoy it. The bug bit me and I never wanted to do anything else.”

Van Zyl takes on responsibility for the day to day management of the winery in addition to assisting with the making of wine.

Appointed on October 1, he arrived from Rust en Vrede wine estate and has previously completed stints at various well-known wineries in the regions of Franschhoek, Wellington and Rawsonville.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to be part of a dynamic team that produces world class wines, while promoting the South African wine industry in general,” says van Zyl. “I am reminded again of a bottle of Neethlingshof 1984 Pinotage that we opened a while back and how we were delighted that it had retained its fresh fruitiness and character.”

“It is especially a privilege to join De Wet, someone who has made a big contribution to the industry and from whom I’m able to learn a lot. I look forward to good times,” he says.