Rosa Kruger has been a consultant vineyard manager for different cellars who designs new vineyard sites and manages existing vineyards for quality wine for 20 years. She travels to the most interesting vineyards of the world annually, to keep herself up-to-date on what it takes to make great wines.
Rosa started life as a political journalist, then became a lawyer before finally finding her life’s calling by chance when managing an apple orchard in a cool climate area that was touted as suitable for vineyards. With her characteristic sense of adventure, she decided to give it a go.
Passionate, determined, generous and very focused, she’s become one of the key figures in the renaissance of South Africa’s wine industry. She works for a handful of wineries but gives free advice to countless more, connecting young winemakers with remarkable sites.
“She treats each vineyard as a family, and each vine as a member of it. She has an intense intimate knowledge of the vineyards she works with”, says winemaker Andrea Mullineux.
Rosa’s biggest love is old vines. In 2016, she founded the Old Vine Project, formalising something that had been taking shape since 2002.
“The Old Vineyard Project of South Africa was founded because we believe in the preservation of old vines. We believe old vines make beautiful wines, wines with complexity and clarity, that reflect the landscape. “
Rosa Kruger is the 2022 Decanter Hall of Fame recipient, making her the first viticulturist and first South African to crack the nod in the 38-year history of the award.