Jamie Williams exerts a magnetic force, using wine as her instrument of choice. Nederburg’s new leader of the white wine team believes that wine is the way to connect people, ignite the senses, and celebrate life.

“That’s how I try to live and enjoy my life. But with balance and with many layers. I’m a wife, a mom, a winemaker, a friend, a daughter, a granddaughter, a colleague.

“That’s how I like wine to be. Many-sided to keep things interesting, but always backed by good values and a firm backbone.

“I think that accurately describes me,” she says, laughing, “I was always the wild one on campus during my varsity days. Sporting pink boots and whatever. Call me expressive!”

After six years as assistant winemaker at Nederburg, Jamie embraces the new role with excitement and gratitude. She reports directly to cellar master Samuel Viljoen “It’s affirming to lead a team, to help build a wine legacy on the shoulders of giants”.

A recent thrill for her was seeing The Winemasters Noble Late Harvest win the Investec Trophy for Best Dessert Wine at the 2024 Trophy Wine Show with a score of 98. 

A born-and-bred Capetonian, Jamie came to wine through a BSc that initially focused on molecular biology and biotechnology, and later, wine biotechnology. Her graduation was promptly followed by an opportunity to work in California in 2016. Returning to South Africa, she interned as a laboratory analyst at Die Bergkelder. A year later, she moved closer to production as a harvest cellar intern, and then joined the Nederburg family in 2018.

Jamie was raised by a single mom and her late grandmother, and today has two children and a family of her own.

“Being a mom is very important to me, but so is my journey as a young woman in this world,” she says. “I get really excited about sharing wine with a new generation of current and potential wine lovers and my peers. This new job creates an even bigger opportunity to do just that.”

Jamie explains that it goes beyond her work as a winemaker. “I’m so lucky to have an excellent support system, so I make a point of getting the crowd together for a weekend break-away to the city. We love the platteland (where we live) and an occasional trip to the beautiful West Coast, but a regular dose of city life is also good.” 

She likes a variety of music from popular South African artists like Tyla and Jimmy Nevis, to hip hop and Amapiano.

“Now, get this. You can catch me and members of our entire team, together with our top tunes, at our just launched roadshow. We’re taking our popular sensorial Dinner of Discovery Series to some of our favourite cities and towns in Mzansi! Go to our blog or sign up for our newsletter to find out where we’ll be next.”