We’re hoping that you’re reading this second installment of Top South African Wineries to Visit because you were suitably hooked by our previous blog and intrigued to read further. If you have discovered this blog post directly and not read through part 1 – please be sure to take a look here. Click here to read part 1
There is so much magic to be found in the Stellenbosch region, that we will remain in this vinous paradise for part 2. Winding roads through valleys, flanked by mountains on one side and vineyards on the other is the default view. On a blue-sky day, there are few places in the world that compare to the sheer beauty that surrounds you. Our first stop is so spectacular, that you may just decide to stay the whole day.
Delaire Graff Estate – The Jewel of the Cape Winelands
The ultimate Cape Winelands experience, Delaire Graff Estate is dedicated to beauty in its many forms. Much like polishing a diamond to reveal its brilliance, jeweller Laurence Graff has transformed an extraordinary natural setting into a world-class destination for wine, art, cuisine, and an escape from the everyday.
Ranked one of the most prestigious wineries in the world. With 20 hectares of vineyards situated on the slopes of Botmaskop Mountain planted with Bordeaux reds and Chardonnay grapes, Delaire Graff Estate produces supremely elegant vintages. The Estate was recently honoured to have been named one of the Top 50 wineries by the World’s Best Vineyards — placing first within the African continent.
Top things to do:
- Wine Tasting: Their elegant, art-filled Wine Lounge is open daily. Enjoy tutored wine tasting experiences, accompanied by elegant food platters, and sample exclusive vintages only available at Delaire Graff.
- Seasonal Settings: Savour a glass of Delaire Graff wine all-year round at the art-filled Wine Lounge – on the spacious terrace in the summer, encircled by dramatic mountain views, or inside accompanied by a crackling log fire come winter.
- Stay at Delaire Graff: Awaken each morning in their luxury accommodation and take a moment to enjoy the breathtaking views before embarking on the day you most desire, be it relaxing on your private deck or exploring the world-renowned Cape Winelands.
- Dine at Delaire Graff: Pairing innovative cuisine with award-winning wines, dining at Delaire Graff is a sensational experience. Their two restaurants, Delaire Graff Restaurant & Indochine Restaurant transform the freshest seasonal ingredients into accomplished, artful dishes, backdropped by iconic Cape Winelands views.
- The Spa at Delaire Graff: Indulge in specialised rituals and therapies inspired by the 5 elements at Delaire Graff Estate Spa. All treatment rooms enjoy a view of their beautiful gardens, while their Spa package guests, and Lodge guests enjoy exclusive use of their sunny terrace with infinity pool and Jacuzzi. Their fully equipped Technogym is available exclusively to Lodge guests in residence. Designed to stimulate mind, body and soul, their Afro-Asian inspired spa menu comprises a range of luxurious skin treatments, massages, body therapies and wellbeing journeys, delivered by expert therapists.
The Rustenberg Estate was founded in 1682 and is nestled in the valley of the Simonsberg Mountain.
Spanning 300 years since its establishment, multiple custodians and a variety of agricultural undertakings, Rustenberg is an estate rich in heritage and history. Under current custodians, the Barlow Family, the Rustenberg team focuses on quality throughout, from the vineyards to the cellar, and in taking care of this incredible slice of the world.
The long and rich history, historic buildings, the gardens and grounds (including the conservation land and wildlife), and of course the wines, all work together to make Rustenberg Wines what it is today.
We have a range of Rustenberg Wines available right here in Australia
Top things to do:
- Wine tasting: At Rustenberg they make almost 20 different wines, split into three distinct ranges, Site Specific Range ( Five Soldiers and Peter Barlow ), The Flagship range ( Stellenbosch Chardonnay & John X Merriman ), Regional Range ( Stellenbosch Chardonnay to name but a few )
- Visit their gorgeous Schoongezicht Manor House Garden: Stop and smell the roses, sit and enjoy the sound of the birds and the bees, or walk the labyrinth for some outdoor meditation.
- Bird watching: There is an abundance of wildlife and bird life on the farm, and you could spot a multitude of bird species – Guinea Fowl, Franklins, Fish Eagles, Buzzards, Sunbirds and more – and although much of their wildlife is nocturnal in nature (Cape Leopards, Caracals, Porcupines, Civets) you may even spot some of their smaller wild creatures like Squirrels, Cape Otters or Mongooses.
- Filming & Photography: Rustenberg Farm boasts a number of different looks and locations all on one property. Shoots have been hosted on the property since the 1980s and they pride themselves on being film friendly, catering to shoots of all sizes, local and international, features, commercials, and stills photography. Their international portfolio includes Starz’s “Outlander”, Netflix’s “Redeeming Love” National Geographic’s “Battle of Gettysburg”, a number of food product adverts, retailer adverts, car adverts, and a number of scenes in international feature films, from countries all over Europe, North America, Asia and Australia.
Uva Mira translates as “The Wonderful Grape”. Uva is the Latin word for grape, Mira means wonderful, miraculous and full of charm.
Uva Mira Mountain Vineyards is located within the area widely recognized as the “Golden Triangle,” renowned for its noble grape varieties and production of wines of outstanding quality.
Their Estate is 127 hectares in size – 33 hectares of which are under vine. Six varietals are grown, namely Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Merlot, Shiraz, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Their vineyards are positioned between 260 and 620 metres above sea level and only nine kilometres from False Bay.
Be sure to stop on the side of the road as you ascend the slopes of the Helderberg mountain and take in the breathtaking views of False Bay and Table Bay. The estate, often wrapped in clouds, subjected to a cooling sea breezes and placed on a granite foundation with strong minerality in the soils, surrounded by acres of fynbos…. is where nature does some of her finest work. Their fine wines are handcrafted using only grapes from the vineyard sites on our property, to truly express the unique traits of our remarkable site.
Wine of elegance, minerality & longevity.
Top things to do:
- Wine tasting: Tasting Room to enjoy a tasting of selected wines and our artisanal platters while taking in our breathtaking views of False Bay, Table Bay and Table Mountain.
In 1989, South African patriarch Hans Schroder returned to South Africa from Japan and purchased the Oude Nektar farm with a goal of growing grapes. Eldest daughter Marie and her American husband Jose relocated to South Africa to join the family. Jose, a graphic designer by trade, discovered his passion for wine. With an artisan’s attention to detail and a purist’s approach in the cellar, Jose slowly developed the wines to where they are today.
Self-taught cellarmaster Jose Conde’s first attempt at winemaking was in 2000, and he chose to experiment with his favourite grape, Cabernet Sauvignon. As luck would have it, his father-in-law farmed arguably the best Cabernet grapes in the region. Made with basic equipment and using traditional methods, the maiden vintage yielded just 2400 bottles, but against the odds and to everybody’s surprise the wine went on to win 5-stars in the Platters Wine Guide, rated 92 points in Wine Spectator, and was selected by UK wine writer Oz Clarke as one of the Top 20 Wines of the Year.
The estate is rated by Tim Atkin MW as a South African First Growth and Forbes Magazine lists the Three Pines Syrah 2016 as one of the “Twelve best wines of 2022”. The wines speak for themselves and should be at the top of your list.
Top Things to do:
- Wine Tasting: Choose from a variety of Stark Conde Wines: their Classic Estate Range, High Altitude Reds or The Best of the Estate
- Dine at Stark-Condé: Enjoy a lovely breakfast or light Lunch in their Postcard Café open daily 9am to 4pm.
- Stay at Stark-Condé: Three Pines Cottage is a self-catering 2-bedroom cottage located on the farm. An ideal getaway for cyclist or hikers with its close proximity to Jonkershoek Nature Reserve.
Situated in an elevated valley of outstanding beauty, Oldenburg Vineyards is surrounded by a spectacular mountain amphitheatre. At the heart of the farm lies Rondekop – the iconic, round hill which influences the vineyards planted on and around it, creating the extraordinary terroir.
Oldenburg’s unique location benefits from the confluence of 8 Natural Elements, creating a distinctive terroir and allowing us to make wines that truly reflect their Place. Exceptional wines from extraordinary terroir.
The highly talented winemaker Nic Van Aarde is a man with a single vision… “My mission is to let the terroir talk’ by allowing our mysterious site to fully show and express itself. This is achieved by picking the grapes at optimal ripeness, minimal manipulation in the cellar and gentle extraction to produce balanced, elegant wines.”
Top things to do:
- Visit the tasting room: The Tasting Room at Oldenburg Vineyards provides the nexus between the natural beauty of their mountain amphitheatre, their vineyards on Rondekop and the wine in the glass in front of you. The whole experience is about bringing what is happening in the vineyards back into your glass. They believe that when they tell people about wine, it is the stories that bring it to life. Taste a selection of wines across all their ranges: <CL°, Oldenburg Vineyards Series and Rondekop.
- Stay at Oldenburg: Dating back over 200 years, the Homestead is the original family home of Oldenburg Vineyards. It has been fully renovated and modernised, whilst retaining the history, architecture and charm of the Cape Dutch aesthetic. They believe that by sharing theri farm with guests for a stay at the stunningly situated Homestead, they are providing a truly unique experience which enables them to connect with the farm, its vineyards, and to better understand their wines. They provide friendly yet exceptional hospitality in a thoroughly private environment. The Homestead offers a serene, private and exclusive environment, with a large private garden and magnificent mountain and vineyard views.
So, the next time you find yourself in South Africa, be sure to visit these top wineries and experience the beauty of the region, one glass at a time.
- Delaire Graff Estate
- Rustenberg Wine Estate
- Uva Mira Mountain Vineyards
- Stark-Condé Wines
- Oldenburg Vineyards