Jaco Potgieter has pretty much seen it all during his nearly twenty years of making wine at Douglas Green. Like the pioneer after which this iconic winery was named, Jaco believes that relationships are an integral part of the industry, and he has built many lasting ones with producers and other stakeholders in his search for the grapes that have given Douglas Green its reputation of consistent excellence among South African consumers.
Jaco grew up in the small Klein Karoo town of Barrydale, but it was not until his student days at Stellenbosch University that the wine bug bit. After obtaining his BSc Viticulture and Oenology degree, he spent many years honing his winemaking skills in the Breedekloof Valley. His favourite part of the process is blending, because he says, it enables one to take the best components and characteristics of each cultivar and region, and merge them into a harmonious whole – a wine that people will enjoy and remember. And that is a pillar of Jaco’s winemaking philosophy, to make wines that the consumer enjoy and that bring friends and loved ones together.
When he is not in the cellar, you’ll probably find this gregarious people’s person spending time at the coast. More specifically, the West Coast town of Yzerfontein where he fishes as often as his busy schedule allows. And of course, he loves to enjoy his daily catch with a glass of ice-cold Douglas Green white wine, soaking up the sights and sounds of the sea.
Jaco also enjoys travelling, and his most treasured wine memory is visiting the famous Winelands of Alsace and the Loire Valley in France. There, he says, wine is a way of life, a culture we can truly aspire to emulate in the local industry. And all the more reason he is proud to be associated with a brand that has been a trusted favourite for multiple generations of wine lovers in South Africa.