Francois, our beloved winemaker and friend, tragically passed away on 13th January 2014 after a short battle with cancer. He leaves behind his lovely wife, Adel, and their two young children, JD and Annabel.
Francois joined us as winemaker at Muratie on 1st December 2005. What struck me from day one was his inimitable humility, honesty and ability to make time for anybody and everybody. Always with a smile on his face, no job was too big for Francois. He was always ready to give and reluctant to receive. In addition to making our wines, conducting our wine tastings and planting our vines, he also took it upon himself to look after my mother’s beautiful garden, assist her with her prized hanepoot and fig jam and do everything else that needed to be done. He sat in on all our monthly farm meetings, keeping his head while listening to all the varied opinions and suggestions. At Muratie we never saw Francois as just our winemaker; he was a member of the family.
Francois leaves behind a treasured legacy at Muratie. He saw the huge potential on the farm, accepted the challenges, and in his eight years with us, took Muratie from the dark ages of winemaking into the light. He has been an inspiration to us all, be it in the office, in our homes, in the vineyards or the cellar, imbuing Muratie with his own unique signature of modesty, kindness, passion, integrity and courage. Francois will also be sorely missed by our colleagues in the wine industry, our loyal customers and visitors to the farm.
As with all the special characters who came before during our estate’s rich h