“One cannot resist the lure of Africa.”

– Rudyard Kipling –

Who We Are

Learn about our story

We are an enthusiastic recently established wine import and distribution business based in The Big Easy, New Orleans.

Our focus is to bring great South African wines to the South of the United States of America.

South to South Wine Importers is a Federally licensed wine importer and a Louisiana licensed wine importer, distributor, and wholesaler.

Age of Sail

Our Team

Meet the team


Suzaan Laing

Founder | Owner, based in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Love for both New Orleans and Cape Town, and a passion for South African wine, led to the founding of South To South Wine Importers to share quality of South African wine with wine drinkers in the southern states of the US.

Lawyer by profession for 25 years, licensed in both South Africa and Louisiana, and graduate of Stellenbosch and Tulane Universities.


Mark von Bentheim

IN MEMORIAM | Co-Founder 1969 – 2022

We suffered the tragic, sudden loss of our business partner and co-founder, Mark, in Cape Town on June 4th, 2022. Mark was passionate about a great many things, including wine, South Africa, marketing and brand strategy, his family and friends and, above all, his wife Melita. 

Our lives and our business can never be the same without him – his talent, warmth, friendship, humour, strategic thinking, boldness, generosity, sense of adventure, enthusiasm, passion for life. Mark will always be on this wine journey with us.  We honour and hold his memory dear, with deep gratitude for his invaluable contribution.

Steph pic-01

Stephanie Jacko

Administration & Logistics, based in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Hailing from Indiana, Stephanie moved to New Orleans in 2017.  She has a degree in film from Ball State University and holds a bartender’s license in Louisiana.  Has worked previously in film production, wine retail, a rock school and as a logistics manager.

Stephanie is responsible for managing our warehouse, logistics and office administration. 


Michelle Gueydan

Resident Sommelier & Sales Manager, based in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Michelle is a native New Orleanian, and a Sommelier who earned her certifications from the Court of Master Sommeliers, The Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and The Sake Professional.

Her professional experiences include serving as Sommelier at The Inn at Little Washington, the Besh Restaurant Group, and Bywater American Bistro.  She assisted with the opening of Early Mountain Vineyards and served as Partnership Director for “The Best of Virginia Wineries”.

Before joining the team at South To South Wine Importers, she focused on VinoSolutions, offering wine education, hospitality consulting, private tastings, and wine pairing dinners.