Wine Fest lights up Maseru

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Nthatuoa Koeshe

MASERU recently got a dose of energy when over 100 colourful revellers thronged the Maseru Club Grounds for the seventh edition of the Lesotho Wine Festival.

A mixture of captains of industry and socialites attended the food and wine galore that was spiced up by smooth music from Majisto’s band.

With over 40 vendors on hand to serve and educate wine lovers on the various wines, the event had all facets to appease the revellers’ cravings.

Launched in 2012, the annual festival is one of Lesotho’s trademark wine culture promotion events in the country. The festival began as a small gathering of friends who wanted to share their passion for wine and its rich history seven years ago.

Founder Paulo de Freitas envisioned a community gathering where people from different cultures and could come together for a day of camaraderie. And seven years later, the festival has now gone international attracting exhibitors from far flung places like Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and Paris among others.

“This festival aimed at exposing the community to boutique wines outside of the mainstream market and prides itself in personalising the relationship between wine farmers and the diverse community of Lesotho,” Paulo told the Lesotho Times on the sidelines of the festival.

He said as the festival grows, they hope to showcase more craft wines, gins and vodkas and more local artistes to attract more Basotho.

Sponsors FNB, who are now in their third year of their partnership with the event said they were proud to be associated with the vibrant event.

FNB marketing manager Lebohang Setlalekhosi said the event presented them with an ideal platform to interact with their clients.

“Basotho like wine and we also have wine makers in the country, so we are trying to support and expose them to many other wine makers from around the world,” Setlalekhosi said.

Johannesburg’s Genevieve Winery founder, Melissa Genevieve Nelsen, told the Weekender that although this was her first time at the Lesotho Wine Festival, she was impressed by how well it was run.

“I was impressed by their good selection of wines on offer for tasting.

“I loved that a lot of the wine makers had come up to the show personally and this is a great way to meet new markets,” Melissa said.

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