An award-winning vintner, South Africa’s first black female wine maker and recognised internationally.
Ntsiki Biyela was raised by her grandmother, who had a very powerful influence on her. She got her grounding from stirring traditional Zulu Beer for hours and hours on end in the beautiful small village of Mahlabathini in the Rural Kwazulu Natal.
Years later, her grandmother tasted her first wine, but seemed unsure at first, but on the second taste she gave her, her stamp of approval! Ntsiki is really setting the bar high in an industry with +300 years of existence in South Africa, and mainly dominated by white males.
It was through a scholarship from South African Airways way back. I was one of the people who were recruited and we were brought to Stellenbosch University to study wine making which was something I had no idea what it was and that it existed. It was one of the things where you get an opportunity to do something and then you commit to it and then years later I loved it.— Ntsiki Biyela - Award-winning Vintner
Ntsiki is still one of the very few black wine makers in South Africa – the country that exports more than 400 000 million litres of wine a year. Being the resident winemaker at the Stellekaya winery in Stellenbosch for many years, Ntsiki is now running her own show as she is the woman behind Aslina Wines
Click below to listen to the full interview: