As the founder and CEO of Port2Port, an online international marketplace for fine wine, Nicolò Stortiglione Pudel is a man on a mission – to get South African wines to the furthest reaches of the globe. For someone who only came to South Africa from his hometown of Milan ten years ago (and with little interest in wine – bar the cursory glass with dinner), Nicolò’s trajectory in the world of South African wine is very impressive.
‘I came to South Africa in search of a different experience to that of my largely European upbringing and lifestyle,’ he explains. ‘I was working as a marketing manager for a hotel group in Cape Town where I was lucky enough to be exposed to the wine industry and quickly developed an interest and passion for what I believe to be one of the world’s most unique wine growing areas,’ explains Nicolò. ‘Once I began to learn about the ancient soils that exist here, coupled with the country’s diverse geographic and climatic conditions, I realized that this, together with the passion of the local winemakers and their long-lasting traditions make South Africa the oldest ‘New World’ wine-growing region.’
‘I was inspired by the fact that as far back as the 1700s, Klein Constantia’s sweet wine, Vin de Constance was considered the greatest wine in the world,’ explains Nicolò. So palatable in fact, that Louis Philippe of France sent emissaries to procure it, Napoleon drank it in exile on the island of St Helena, while Frederick the Great, Bismarck and the King of England had regular consignments delivered to Europe. ‘Our idea was to be a part of South Africa’s wine renaissance,’ he explains. As such Port2Port cuts out the middleman to deliver wine directly from the supplier to wine lovers the world over. Everything that Port2Port does, subscribes to their four pillars, namely: selection (having the very best selection of fine wines, some of which are not available through ordinary retailers); provenance (everything is shipped from the source); price (they cut out the middleman) and of course service (next day delivery to certain countries where international warehouses keep regular stocks).
‘It’s a very exciting time to be involved in the local winemaking industry, and our relationship with key winemakers has resulted in a wonderful partnership with ROAR AFRICA, where we tailor-make wonderful experiences for visitors to South Africa,’ says Nicolò. Guests interested in wine can look forward to unprecedented access to rare, vintage wines but also to the oft-unseen homes of the proprietors themselves. So, you may find yourself enjoying a home-cooked meal in a 400-year-old farmhouse, doing a private wine tasting with an award-winning winemaker or joining in on the harvest of your favorite varietal. If you would like to know more about the wine experiences that Port2Port offer exclusively to ROAR AFRICA guests, email firstname.lastname@example.org