About Us

VinoSA sells New Wave and small parcel South African wines. Some of it is not available anywhere else in the UK. The distinctive style of these wines has been impressing the wine world for a few years.

‘The new wave movement has grown at an extraordinary rate over the past ten or fifteen years, primarily because of the availability of under-appreciated old vineyard sites. For the growers as much as for the producers this was a marriage made in heaven. There were plenty of parcels of vines capable of yielding suitable fruit, and not too many winemakers chasing them down. Meantime, while the number of producers has increased, the number of sites has diminished.’ – Michael Fridjhon – founder of Wine Wizard

Rather than have a gazillion wines on the site, we will only sell selections of what we know we have in stock. If you order a 2017 we will not send you a 2018 because we ran out of the 2017. We do have some rather special wines that will sell very quickly. You will only be able to buy one bottle of these wines per order. Sorry about that. We will take wines down when they sell out and may have to wait quite a while until we have the next vintage to sell. You can be the first to know when we get them if you sign up for our newsletter!

You will always get the chance to buy superb wine that will not be available online elsewhere in the UK. If you have read this far, you clearly have an interest in VinoSA and our wine. Now meet the people behind the business.

Ben Prior

For me, it all started 24 years ago unloading containers of South African wine for my first boss at the age of 15. After lifting 100s of cases every few months it made sense to start learning about what I was handling. The first-ever wines I tasted were Neil Ellis and Vergelegen Sauvignon Blanc. What an epic way to start! Over time I started moving through the likes of Warwick, Neethlingshof and many others.

Eleven years ago, before opening my restaurant in Cornwall, I made a, kind of, pilgrimage to South Africa. I stayed and explored the Cape for 10 weeks. Very soon discovered that I only knew the briefest of information on what is there! I have run my restaurant for over 9 years and championed South African wines. I see real interest shown on a daily basis. So now it seems time to do something more.

There is a huge variety of great wines produced in South Africa by many wonderful and talented people. The problem is that many of these wines never see these shores. For a long while, winemakers that produced outstanding small batches were only able to sell their cheaper range into the UK.

I’ve been thrilled to get to know some of the ‘New Wave’ winemakers personally. I’ve really enjoyed their infectious passion. We have talked about growing or buying the best quality grapes; terroir; reviving old vines; experimenting with new viticultural practices, winemaking techniques and more. They each have a vision to create amazing Cape wine that stands out in its own right.

They don’t just want an ‘interpretation’ of an already existing style. This is such a special project to me especially after getting to know the winemakers, who are all really great people. Our determination as a company is to get a greater number of people in the UK to taste and enjoy these wonderful wines. We don’t want to see whole allocations get stuffed away in the cellars of a few individuals.

It’s been a real pleasure working with my friend Joff over the last 10 years – especially the close contact we have had in getting VinoSA off the ground. As of February 2022, he’s stepping down as a director of the company and its day to day running to enjoy his ‘retirement’! However, he will still be advising where appropriate (digging me out of tech holes!) and cheering me on from the sidelines.

I really hope that you, like us, find some new wines you enjoy. Be a wine adventurer – explore something new and something old – try a new blend or find a new favourite. But – please remember, a bottle is always more enjoyable shared!!

Joff Day

Joff DayUpdated Feb 1st 2022
My first taste of wine was when I was a kid.  My parents Sunday lunchtimes were occasionally accompanied by a bottle of Sauternes. I liked it. It was sweet, alcoholic and if I was sneaky, I could always drain the bottom of the bottle after lunch. It was many years later that I really started to discover and enjoy the wide, wide world of wine.

In January 2019 I joined Ben on a visit to the Cape. I also met some of the wonderful winemakers whose wines you can buy on the site here. They are some of the most unpretentious, friendly and generous people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting.

Ben and I are convinced that South African wine holds its head up high next to the best wines from around the world. It’s so great to see our customers understanding the superb value that South African wine has to offer – a drum Jancis Robinson bangs at every opportunity.

As you will have read above, it’s time for me to step down (as well as slow down!) from my part in the company and enjoy seeing Ben taking VinoSA to new heights. I will continue to support Ben however small my role. Here’s to new wines and new adventures!

Vino SA Ltd. trading as VinoSA
Registered in England. Company No. 11600332.
Registered office: Tower House, Churchtown, St Hilary, CORNWALL TR20 9DQ, United Kingdom
VAT No. 320316554
The VinoSA logo is a registered trademark.
©2020 VinoSA All rights reserved