Pretoria man saves whisky from ‘drowning’

Johannesburg – Faced with having to choose between rescuing a rare bottle of Glenlivet Scotch whisky or his camera from the sea, a Pretoria man grabbed the bottle, according to a report on Thursday.

Heinrich Scholtz went to a beach near Mossel Bay last week with his wife Annerien, where they decided to take “arty” photographs of their prize whisky collection, purchased on a trip to Scotland in 2011.

“We bought a number of special bottles at the Bruichladdich distillery on Islay, which you can only buy on the island,” Scholtz told Beeld newspaper.

The 700 ml bottle of Glenlivet was vatted in 1977, and cost Scholtz R1 925.

He placed the bottle strategically, so as to best capture the back-lit sun, which created an amber glow.

A few moments later, he was engulfed by a large wave, and had only a split second to choose between rescuing his camera or his Glenlivet.

“The wave took my bottle. I made a grab for it. The water level kept rising,” Scholtz recalled.

His camera got wet, “but I decided I wouldn’t move, and would in fact dive in after the bottle if I had to”.

He managed to retrieve the bottle from under a rock, but the camera was water-damaged.