NgiyiMbali Wines is a newly launched, family-owned range of wines in South Africa, founded by entrepreneur Mbali Masike. It has always been Mbali’s dream to become a winemaker. A little over 5 years ago Mbali tasted a bottle of wine and she fell in love with it. The inspirational story of Ngiyi Mbali Wines started there.
Having experienced the joys of wine tasting, Mbali Masike tracked down the maker of the wine which she initially fell in love with on that first tasting, who was John Robert Frater, a fifth generation winemaker whose family have been producing wonderful wines from the De Zoete Inval Estate in Paarl in the Western Cape. She told Rob about her experience with his wine and asked him to mentor her and teach about the art of wine making. At first Rob did not take her seriously, but fortunately for Mbali her then full-time job allowed her to travel to the Cape region of South Africa often. So while in the Cape on one of her visits, she decided to drive to the De Zoet Inval estate to meet Rob personally, and to show him how serious she was about wanting to learn about winemaking. On meeting her, Rob then agreed, and the mentorship programme started in earnest, leading to the building of a beautiful working relationship. Much has happened since that first wine tasting. Mbali is not yet a cellar master but believes she will be one day. She is very involved in the production of the wines that today carry her name - Ngiyi Mbali - and plans to expand the current range of six wines that are now being produced and sold.
"Ngiyi Mbali Wines was inspired by the vines of Paarl in the Western Cape of South Africa, where a childhood dream was ignited when I met a cellar master who is the epitome of wine making."
Mbali has funded the business from her savings. When she exhausted her savings she cashed in her two son’s education trust, such was her faith in building a business that could grow, thrive and create a legacy. Mbali initially ran the business with her two brothers while she kept her day job in order to survive. However, very recently she has decided to quit her job as National Marketing Manager at an insurance company to focus more on her business and cash in pension funds in order to invest in the business. She says: “I know in the long run it will pay dividends and I am doing this for my children and I know this will benefit them. For me it’s not just taking out wine and then selling it. I want to be involved in the whole operation.” Her family are still heavily involved in ensuring the business can achieve success, with brothers Nkamogeleng taking the role of Head of Operations, and Tshidiso Legae, a graphic designer also taking a hands-on role.
"The Cape Winelands are among the best vineyards in the world. They have a great selection of grapes that are of South African origin. Ngiyi Mbali Wines takes this into consideration when making its wines, and we strive to make wines that rival the world’s best."
Introducing The Ngiyi Mbali Wines Range
Dark Angel - Pinotage
This Pinotage named Dark Angel is the only wine in our range that does not have an Africanname. This is simply because Mbali and her mentor argued and debated when
regarding the ingredients of the wine. However, when It was ready Rob the Cellar Master and Wine Maker gave Mbali a call and said she was a Dark Horse as the wine tasted really good. As a result, the name Dark Angel was chosen to launch the wine.
This Pinotage is bold and aromatic, characterized by the distinctive taste of
blackcurrant. It pairs well with various dishes from elegant roasted duck, to lamb, casseroles, stews and spicy curries.
Shoki - Shiraz
This Shiraz, named Shoki after Mbali’s mother Reshoketswe, represents her personality which is cheeky yet cheerful. Mbali suggests that customers take time to know this wine as they will surely love it. This Shiraz Blend called pairs well with a variety of meats, dark chocolates, cheese and fruit platters. And yes, also the traditional South Africa Braai, and is also excellent when added to Oxtail casserole.
Mmino - Shiraz
This Shiraz Blend named Minno means Music is Setswana, and it is literally music to the palette on tasting. This is because it’s a very versatile wine blend. Mmino can be enjoyed by those who prefer the sweeter wines, and also by those who prefer dry wines. It unites different palettes, just as music has he ability to unite different nations.
Mmino is a very well rounded blend of fruits, that gives a pronounced taste and can be enjoyed with various meat dishes, fish, or traditional South African favourites such as braai meat or fruits or cheese platters.
Sebata - Cabernet Sauvignon
This Sebata, named Sebata as a tribute to Mbali’s family tribe, is a Cabernet Sauvignon blend. Her mother is Pedi and the family is from the Lion tribe. Sebata is a common referral to the trusted, honoured and respected beings who know and own their place.
This Cabernet Sauvignon blend is a cheeky ruby-red wine with undertones of berries and fruit. Sebata can be enjoy with dishes such as pulled pork, various meat dishes and South African traditional favourites such as oxtail stew or a delicious fruit platter
Ngiyi Mbali Wines also produce a Rose wine named Dakalo and lastly a Chardonnay named Ha Senna.