South African brandy wins ‘World’s Best Wine Brandy’ for the second consecutive year, expertly blended by a woman

Published May 24, 2024


Next time someone offers us a French cognac South Africans can proudly decline and declare that we have the best cognac in the world!

At the 2024 World Drinks Awards South Africa’s Van Ryn’s 15-Year-Old Potsill Brandy was awarded ‘World’s Best Wine Brandy’, for the second consecutive year, beating fierce competition from France, Spain, Australia.

This is the 4th time within 5 years that Van Ryn’s brandy has been awarded this title.

Wine Brandy is made from distilled wine and matured in French Oak Barrels. Potstill brandy is made in the same specialised production methods used for the production of Cognac – the name Cognac, however, is reserved only for brandies made in southwest France.

Each year, the World Drinks Awards celebrates the very best in the global drinks industry, including the World Brandy Awards category by a blind tasting and scoring of the brandies according to nose, palate and finish, balance, character, complexity, and overall quality.

The panel of international judges praised Van Ryn’s 15-Year-Old Potstill Brandy as "A graceful liquid with notes of liquorice and toffee and the thick creaminess of clotted cream. Stone fruit on the palate, as well as a drizzle of golden syrup and some residual tannic fruit."

Master Brandy Blender Marlene Bester. Picture: Supplied

Master Blender, Marlene Bester says achieving the World’s Best title twice in a row for the Van Ryn’s 15-Year-Old Postill Brandy is a highlight for the team.

“Year-on-year our brandies receive the world’s best accolades, showcasing our commitment to innovation, quality and the art of crafting exceptional brandy, building on our reputation as one of the world’s leading fine brandy houses.”

Bester says that they allow for several years of maturation to develop their complex layers of flavours. They lose approximately 3% of volume per year to the Angel’s Share, however, the result is an incredibly smooth brandy that rewards in character and quality.”

Enjoying brandy is not a secret, although master blenders around the world always recommend aged brandies with a dash of water, on the rocks or in a cocktail.

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