Johan BothaJohan Botha


I am an award-winning photographer, anthropologist, passionate cook, devoted father and full of shit husband.

At the mature age of 38 I changed careers and in 2011 graduated Cum Laude as a Winemaker and Viticulturist.

This blog is dedicated to my learnings.

Contact Details:

Cell: 083 284 7676
Twitter: @wynmaker

Too echo the words of Robert Mondavi from his autobiography; “Wine to me is passion. Its family and friends. It’s warmth of heart and generosity of spirit. Wine is art. It’s culture. It’s the essence of civilization and the art of living.”

The decision to study Oenology and Viticulture came not only as a life changing, but also life altering experience at an advance stage in my life. With an empirical academic background and a natural creative artistic streak, it was at last possible to pursue a career where I could find quality of life, a sense of belonging and the ability to use science and artistic flair to create a product like no other. One that is a living thing with a soul of its own, one that touches the lives of so many through all of life’s tribulations. It celebrates birth, coming of age, love, health, religion and for some, even death.For me, the aim with a career as a winemaker would be to create and innovate wines that not only excel in a competitive market, but always delivers the highest quality wine at an ethical price point, without compromising sustainable and best environmental practices.


Commercial Photography
Cooking and Catering
Presenting and Lecturing
Cellar Administration and management


Cum Laude graduate B.Agric in Cellar Technology

Cape Institute for Agricultural Training – Elsenburg

Government Agency; 501-1000 employees; Research industry

January 2009 – Present (3 years 1 month) Stellenbosch

My experience during the 2011 harvest
The 2011 training harvest at Ellensburg’s, Cape Institute for Agricultural Training saw the birth of some excellent wines.

Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Less than a hectare of vines were harvested at 23° Balling. The grapes were co-fermented to bring out the best of the cultivar. It produced a fresh crisp wine with prominent green and tropical fruit notes.

Mourvedré Rose 2011
Harvested at 21° Balling. The free-run juice was inoculated with an experimental two stage yeast. Fermentation was initiated by a wild yeast strain and then inoculated with a commercial strain. It produced a wine with creamy, guava notes. This was used as a blend component in a rose.

The crushed berries with skin contact of 12 hours produced pressed juice that started with spontaneous fermentation. The wild yeast produced strong mulberry and cherry aromas. Since the years delivered such impressive results under white wine making conditions, a sample of the yeast was sent to the Agricultural Research Council for isolation.

Pinotage Bush-vines 2011
One and a half hectares of 15 year old Pinotage bush-vines were harvested at 28° Balling and produced 4 tons of premium quality berries. After a nine day fermentation, the wine was inoculated with a Lactic Acid bacteria and left to complete malolactic fermentation. On the 31st of May the wine was transferred to five 500 liter barrels. Three of the barrels are traditional French oak while the other 2 barrels are lesser known French acacia wood. This is an experiment to see what unique character the acacia matured wine can potentially add to the final blend. Results at this stage is promising.

Rose Blend 2011
Nicknamed e-lolipop, this is a four way blend of 60% Pinotage, 25% Petit Verdot, 15% Mourvedre(2 parts named above). All components were fermented separately and blended to produce a wine with strong red lollipop and candy-floss notes. This wine was chosen to be bottled for the Cape Agricultural Department.

This position is associated with:

Freelance Commercial Photographer

Johan Botha Photography

March 2005 – Present (6 years 11 months) Cape Town Area, South Africa

Commercial, Creative and Documentary Photography.

Cellar Labourer

Kanonkop Winery

January 2010 – January 2010 (1 month)

General cellar related duties.

Cellar Assistant, Tasting Room Assistant

Val de Vie

Privately Held; 51-200 employees; Real Estate industry

April 2009 – June 2009 (3 months)

Various specialized and general wine making and cellar related duties as assistant to the winemaker.

Cooking Classes Presenter


2008 – 2009 (1 year)

Present various Italian, Thai and Mediterranean cooking workshops.

Photography Lecturer

College of Cape Town, Department of Art and Design

2003 – March 2005 (2 years)

Present all formal and practical lectures in:

NQF Level 4 Photography
Photography N4, N5 & N6
Intro N4 : Form & Colour

Direct and manage National Examinations for the National Department of Education and coordinate annual campus stock-taking.


College of Cape Town, Core Skills Center

1997 – 2002 (5 years) Cape Town Area, South Africa

Present formal lectures in:

Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management N4, N5 & N6
Marketing Research N6
Human Resources Management N4
Income Tax N6

Act as Emergency and Damage Management coordinator of campus,
Direct and manage National Examinations for the National Department of Education and coordinate annual campus stock-taking.

Regional Manager

Central Statistical Service

1995 – 1997 (2 years)

Regional Manager
Control and management of all Census personnel, general management and administration of three census offices: Somerset-Wes, Stellenbosch and Swellendam.
Tactical and operational management of Census 1996 in 14 managerial districts.

Departmental Officer and Tutor

Department of Anthropology, University of Stellenbosch

1990 – 1994 (4 years)

Administration of students, presentation of tutorial lectures and work as museum technician for Ethnographical collection, Stellenbosh University Museum.

Honors and Awards

  • Dux Student in Cellar Technology

    Elsenburg Agricultural Training Institute
    • December 2011
    • Cape Institute for Agricultural Training – Elsenburg

    The Co-op Wine Cellars SA Floating Trophy and Certificate for Duxstudent in Cellar Technology.

  • Best Student in Cellar Technology (Theory)

    Elsenburg Agricultural Training Institute
    • December 2011
    • Cape Institute for Agricultural Training – Elsenburg

    The Goudini Co-op Wine Cellar Floating Trophy and Award for best student in Cellar Technology: Theory


  • English

    (Native or bilingual proficiency)

  • Afrikaans

    (Native or bilingual proficiency)


Elsenburg Agricultural Training Institude

B.Agric Cum Laude, Cellar Technology

1990 – 2011

Awarded – 2011 Dux student: Cellar Technology
Awarded – 2011 Best student Cellar Technology (Theory)

Activities and Societies: Chairperson for Student Representative Counsel 2010 and 2011.
Member for Student Representtative Counsel 2009.

Stellenbosch University/Universiteit Stellenbosch

B.A., Anthropology and Sociology

1990 – 1994


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