This is the remarkable story of four Zimbabwean economic refugees who arrived in South Africa with nothing but the clothes on their back (and having never tasted wine) who ultimately became the first ever team from Zimbabwe to compete in the World Wine Championships. Towards the end of the first decade of this century, there was an exodus of economic migrants from Zimbabwe where in August 2008, inflation reached a staggering 11.2 million per cent. Under President Robert Mugabe, many Zimbabweans were well educated yet often unable to feed themselves and their families. Many young people smuggled themselves over the border to reach South Africa seeking work. Four of these men, independent of one another, worked their way up to become respected sommeliers at Cape Town’s top four restaurants, despite never having known wine or fine dining in Zimbabwe – or indeed each other. Journalist Erica Platter wrote an article on about them which led to a crowdfunding initiative on the site to get them, as Team Zimbabwe, to Burgundy to compete in the World Wine Tasting Championships. An Australian film crew documented the entire journey and produced an award winning film Blind Ambition (100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes) about this bold initiative. In this episode, Tinashe Nyamudoka, one of the four Zim somms and now the producer of Kumusha Wines, shares his extraordinary story with Jancis.

Story of Blind Ambition:

Blind Ambition official film website:

Kumusha Wines:

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