DINERS CLUB Annual Winelist Awards Eastern Cape

Diners Club is celebrating its coveted Winelist Awards with events in the Western Cape, Gauteng, Kwa-Zulu-Natal and Eastern/Southern Cape this month: The Eastern and Southern Cape and Klein Karoo winners were announced at a function at Monet’s at Fancourt, George.

See list of winners below.

The Diners Club Winelist Awards have honoured the best wine lists in the country for over two decades and attract restaurants eager to gain recognition for the energy and attention they put into their wine lists. 2019 saw a year-on-year entry growth of over 10% – this reflects that an ever-growing number of establishments and patrons appreciate that the perfect meal is greatly enhanced by a fine wine to match.

This year, 205 restaurants from around the country submitted wine lists for judging by a select panel led by publisher of the Platter’s by Diners Club Wine Guide, Jean-Pierre Rossouw.

“It’s clear that dining establishments are giving their wine lists ever-more attention, and a trend that I’d really like to applaud is the growing number of wine stewards and sommeliers that curate and present the lists,” says Rossouw. “It’s also encouraging to note the number of establishments offering a wider choice of wines by the glass.”

The Diners Club Winelist Awards are a benchmark for excellence in the restaurant industry and it was encouraging to see as many as 47 restaurants countrywide achieving Diamond status this year.

Diners Club has a long history of supporting the wine industry. The response to this annual competition confirms the high standard of restaurants around the country and the significant choice our cardholders have when it comes to eating out.

In addition to Head Judge JP Rossouw, the judging panel comprised leading experts, Pete Goffe-Wood, Spencer Fondaumiere, Karin Visser and James Mukosi.

EASTERN CAPE, SOUTHERN CAPE AND KLEIN KAROO WINNERS

Platinum Awards

  • Pumba Private Game Reserve – Bush Lodge, Highlands, Makana Municipality
  • Pumba Private Game Reserve – Water Lodge, Highlands, Makana Municipality
  • Chatter’s Bistro, Knysna
  • De Viswijf Restaurant, Jeffrey’s Bay
  • Dune Ridge Country House, St Francis Bay
  • Gallery Café, Prince Albert (Klein Karoo)
  • Hacklewood Hill Country House, Port Elizabeth
  • Hopefield Country House, Sundays River Valley Addo
  • Hunter Hotel Group, Plettenberg Bay
  • Lairds Lodge Country Estate, Jeffrey’s Bay
  • Swartberg Country Manor, Oudtshoorn, Klein Karoo
  • The Fat Fish Restaurant, George
  • The Fat Fish Restaurant, Plettenberg Bay
  • The Hussar Grill Walmer, Port Elizabeth
  • The Hussar Grill, George
  • The Sands @ St Francis Bay
  • The Verandah Beach Hotel, Summerstrand, Port Elizabeth

Gold Awards

Col’Cacchio Pizzeria Boardwalk, Port Elizabeth

 

The Pupo Reign Continues, Samuel Wins QS10,000 EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira

PRAIA DE RIBEIRA D’ILHAS, Ericeira / Portugal (Sunday, September 29, 2019) – Samuel Pupo (BRA) has won the QS10,000 EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira in exciting fashion today, claiming victory in the Final bout against Stuart Kennedy (AUS) held in three-to-four foot rights at Ribeira d’Ilhas.

Pictured: Samuel Pupo (BRA-left) and Stuart Kennedy (AUS-right) in Ericeira. – Credit: © WSL / Poullenot

The final stop on the 2019 World Surf League (WSL) European Qualifying Series (QS), the EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira has been treated to an abundance of swell and incredible performances by some of the world’s best surfers both on the Championship Tour and Qualifying Series, culminating today with Pupo’s victory.

“It’s been an amazing week here at this contest,” Pupo said. “We got all types of conditions and I’m just so glad to get my first win on the QS. I’m super happy to be here with my brother and all my friends who have been helping me, it’s been incredible their support through every single heat. Stu is an amazing surfer and I never counted him out, even with 3 minutes left I knew he was capable of getting that score.”

This result comes as a confirmation of the young natural foot’s current form as he put together an impressive European leg with back-to-back 9th place results in Pantin and Azores and his major victory today in Ericeira. The 19 year-old came to Galicia as an alternate and turned his season around with brilliant surfing which catapulted him into qualifying talks as he leaves Portugal ranked 9th in the Qualifying Series.

“It’s just crazy how things go in surfing,” Pupo continued. “I don’t even want to think about the qualification, I still have so many things to figure out before I get to Hawaii. I really just want to go home and see my family now, get some rest and get back to work. I’ve been stressing less and enjoying myself a lot more in the water and I think that was key.”

Pupo’s victory comes only a few weeks after his older brother and former CT surfer Miguel Pupo (BRA) claimed his own QS10,000 win at the ABANCA Galicia Classic Surf Pro.

Pupo and Kennedy took it to the lineup on the incoming tide for the Final, with three-to-four foot rights peeling down the point and virtually no wind. They both started with a 6+ score to get their feet in the wax, but it was Pupo who swiftly changed gears to nail a combination of aggressive turns and post two excellent scores of 8.50 and 8.07, his opponent requiring a near-perfect score. 

Kennedy tried his best with the cards he was dealt but his wave-selection was slightly off and he could never really challenge the Brasilian for the lead. As time ran away, the situation remained and Pupo claimed the biggest win of his young career in Ericeira, his first on the Qualifying Series.

Pictured: The emotion was palpable as the two brothers celebrated their historic rise to the top of the Qualifying Series with back-to-back QS10,000 victories. – Credit: © WSL / Poullenot

After two seasons on the Championship Tour, Stuart Kennedy (AUS) fell off tour and struggled ever since to put together a big qualifying campaign on the QS. The runner-up today and 8,000 points could turn his year around as he jumped 35 spots up into 15th place on the rankings, with a good shot at cracking the Top 10 with a big finish in Hawaii.

“I can’t give up now if I’m making finals!” Kennedy said. “Hopefully I can get back on the tour and make some damage up there, I’d love to make the tour with Connor O’Leary (AUS) cause I’ve put a lot of focus into helping him and it’d be great to share this with him. The Brazilians have overtaken the world with all their event wins and we’re just trying to keep up.”

In a battle of youth, Jacob Willcox (AUS) came up just short in the opening Semifinal against Pupo, despite having his chances in the lineup. The talented goofy foot from Western Australia continued to slay the long open walls of Ribeira d’Ilhas and combined big vertical hits on his backhand on his best wave. He unfortunately narrowly missed the last section to post an 8.00 which begged the question: could it have been the score if he landed his last big turn?

Either way Willcox will leave Portugal with a career-best result and 6,500 more ranking points to his name, moving all the way up to 23rd on the Qualifying Series to cement his spot in the remaining big events of 2019 and even an outside shot at a Top 10 finish by year’s end.

“It’s a great way to end up my European leg for sure,” Willcox said. “It hurts a little bit, I can’t stop thinking what if I didn’t fall on that turn, and if on my 5.8 I did another good snap instead of that floater I might have been close to the win. But congrats to Sammy he’s been surfing great. It’s been a really fun event and I’ll take a lot of positive out of it and towards Hawaii.”

In the second Semifinal, two more experienced surfers took it to the lineup and the current World No. 22 Yago Dora (BRA) finally succumbed to the CT curse that saw 17 Championship Tour surfers fall out of the draw in Ericeira, this time the executioner was Kennedy.

After a huge win at the Vans US Open of Surfing and a runner-up at the Oi Hang Loose Pro Contest earlier this year, Dora adds a third major result to his 2019 QS campaign and has taken a massive leap towards defending his spot on the Championship Tour for 2020, sitting second on the QS after Ericeira.

“My goal was to re-qualify for the CT next year and I believe I did that so yeah I’m super happy,” Dora said. “It hurts to be that close and not make the Final but Stu has been surfing so good he deserves to be on that Final. Yesterday I honestly thought I’d lost the heat with 30 seconds remaining and that’s another lesson for me to just never give up and have faith.”

In between the Semis and Final of the EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira, the ‘You and the Sea Heritage Heat’ brought back two legends of the sport for a special heat between Taj Burrow (AUS) and Tiago Pires (PRT). Both surfers put on an amazing show, clearly showing they have lost nothing of their past magic as they ripped apart the long rights of Ribeira d’Ilhas. Burrow’s progressive turns came up stronger than Pires’ experience in his home lineup and eventually the Australian took out the heat.

With the completion of the EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira, the global Qualifying Series rankings have been drastically altered, here’s the new current Top 10:

Men’s Qualifying Series Top 10:
1 – Jadson Andre (BRA)   
2 – Yago Dora (BRA)    
3 – Alex Ribeiro (BRA)    
4 – Miguel Pupo (BRA)   
5 – Jake Marshall (USA)   
6 – Frederico Morais (PRT)    
7 – Jorgann Couzinet (FRA)   
8 – Connor O’Leary (AUS)    
9 – Samuel Pupo (BRA)    
10 – Deivid Silva (BRA)    

With two double-qualifiers at the moment in Silva and Dora, this opens up two spots for Matt Banting (AUS) and Barron Mamiya (HAW) who would be qualified for the 2020 Championship Tour if the season ended today.

The next and second-to-last QS10,000 of the season will be the Hawaiian Pro at Haleiwa from November 13-24, 2019.

NSRI Jeffreys Bay attend to non-fatal drowning victim

NSRI STATION 21 - St Francis BayIn Friday afternoon, 27th September, NSRI Jeffreys Bay duty crew were activated following reports from an NSRI off-duty crewman, who works at a restaurant at the beach, of a non-fatal drowning at Dolphin Beach.

Friends, of a 19 year old Port Elizabeth male who got into difficulty while swimming after suffering a medical complaint in the water, had assisted him out of the water and lifeguards were in attendance on the scene when the NSRI crewman, alerted to a commotion on the beach, investigated and raised the alarm after finding the casualty unconscious on the beach.

NSRI medics and Private Care ambulance services responded and the patient was been transported to hospital in a stable condition and is expected to fully recover.

The friends of the teenager are commended for their assistance to get him out of the water.

And on, Saturday, 28th, NSRI Knysna duty crew activated following a request for assistance from three crew of a yacht, sailing from Port Elizabeth to Mossel Bay, reporting to be safe but their 34 foot yacht dismasted in strong winds off-shore of Buffels Bay and needing to be towed into Knysna.

KNysna NSRI sea rescue craft Eileen Meadway and Jaytee 4 were launched and responded to the scene.

On arrival on the scene the the yacht was taken under tow and towed into Knysna without incident where repairs to the yacht will be made.