Libertas appoints new cellarmaster

Lizelle Gerber

Seasoned, award-winning winemaker Lizelle Gerber is joining Nederburg Wines in Paarl as its new cellarmaster, from the beggining August.

Nederburg is part of the newly-formed Libertas Vineyards and Estates, Distell’s independent premium and fine wine company.

“We are proud and excited to welcome Lizelle to the team,” says Niël Groenewald, managing director of Nederburg. She brings an impressive set of innate talent and creativity, as well as practical knowledge and experience to the position of cellarmaster.”

Ms Gerber obtained her degree in winemaking at the Elsenburg Agricultural Training Institute of Stellenbosch, following a one-year stint with the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).

Here she learned perseverance, persistence and precision, she says, elements that are serving her well in her current vocation.

She started her winemaking career in 1996 at Zevenwacht, but it was her tenure at Avontuur in the early 2000s that cemented her love for the vine.

In-between her time at these two estates, Ms Gerber spent a harvest season in the Alsace region of France where she gained important early exposure to the international wine industry.

She was winemaker at DGB’s Bellingham from 2004, after which she joined Boschendal in August 2006, where she worked for over a decade as its dedicated Methode Cap Classique (MCC) and white-wine maker.

In her new role, Ms Gerber will oversee the production of Nederburg’s wine portfolio, and serve as mentor to young winemaking protégé for Pongrácz, Andiswa Mapheleba, to fast-track her development as a specialist MCC winemaker.

“Lizelle is known for being progressive, strategic, and disciplined yet innovative, says Mr Groenewald.

We are confident in her ability to provide astute direction and inspiration to Nederburg’s team of talented winemakers, and look forward to gleaning valuable insights from her as she takes up the reins to lead Nederburg in its next phase of continuing a legacy of winemaking excellence.”