South African Wine

 

The history of wine-making in South Africa began as the Dutch East India company established a “refreshment station” at the Cape for trading fleets (a precursor to the truck stop) in 1652. Jan van Riebeeck, the first Cape governor planted the first vineyard in 1655 and others followed with various Dutch immigrants. The Constantia vineyard was first planted by Simon van der Stel and gained some notoriety. But since the Dutch, face it, aren’t really known for their viticultural skills, it wasn’t until the French Huguenots settled in the Cape around the 1680s that more refined wine-making techniques were practiced. 
 
But South African wines still had yet to catch on in the rest of the world. In the 18th century, there was a shortage of proper oak barrels for aging, and terroirs and climates had yet to be matched to the grapes most suited to grow in them. But the British occupation of the Cape finally helped nudge things along in the mid century, since they Read more »

Mentor for South African Wines

Wisequeen Donna Jackson

Passionate wine enthusiast/writer/consultant.Specialist on Italy, where She has made her home and kingdom for the past decade. Travels extensively in Europe and New world,Portugal,Douro, South Africa,and in particular Bordeaux style wines, loves Dolcetto

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Popular wines made in South Africa under $20

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Varietals Produced in South Africa View all

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

    Sauvignon Blanc is widely grown in California -- at over 15,000 acres, it’s now the third most planted variety -- and...

  • Pinotage

    History of the grape: In 1925, Stellenbosch University Chief Horticulture Professor Abraham Izak Perold created the P...

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Chenin Blanc

    History of the grape: Modern day French oenologist Pierre Galet states Chenin Blanc has been in France at least since...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

Subregions of South Africa

  • Breede River Valley

      The Breede River Valley is a low altitude, flat wine region in South Africa. Much of it ha...

  • Bot River

  • Coastal Region

      The Coastal Region, within the Western Cape district, is considered the heart of the South...

Popular Wineries in South Africa View all

  • Neil Ellis Wines

    Neil Ellis Wines differs from most South African wineries in that instead of owning vineyards we ...

  • Rupert & Rothschild

    At the foot of the spectacular Simonsberg mountain in the Franschhock Valley lies the historic Fr...

  • Goats Do Roam Wine Company

    Goats do Roam is a South African wine company, based in the Paarl region of the Cape winelands...

  • Boland Kelder

    Situated in the picturesque Paarl Valley, Boland Cellar has much to boast about. Nominated as one...

  • Obikwa

    A South African Winery specializing in classic South African grape varieties such as Sauvignon ...

  • Robertson Winery

    Our winery has a long-standing tradition of dedicated grape-growing families, some of whom are 4t...

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South Africa on Snooth

  • Two Oceans Shiraz 2016

    Snoothrank:

    This bottle was part of a lot I bought on the website ... large Two Oceans concern in South Africa and made of 100% syrah/shiraz grapes sourced from five different locations with the wine spending three months in oak barrels.I started the bottle last night with my supper of pork stew.It is a fairly deep red colour and there is some blackcurant ... Read More

    Wine review by duncan 906


  • Vertobe, welcome.South Africa has a lot of quite decent sauvignon blanc and chenin blanc, and I tend to go for them before wines made from similar grapes in New Zealand. Great QPR for such whites from several producers. You should try other labels, as well, as you can find them. Look forward to hearing more about your South African (or other) wi... Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...


  • I recently bought this one: https://www.upperwine.com/products/wine-western-cape-south-africa-white-blossom-buiten-gewoon-2017 It's suprisingly good, with a nice and subtle bitterness in it. Made from 100% Chenin Blanc in the Western Cape. Buiten Gewoon also has a red wine, I'll try that one next. Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...


  • Mbali Chenin Blanc/Viognier 2017

    Snoothrank:

    Great wine. Lasted one week in the fridge. Crisp. Screwtop. Read More

    Wine review by connie7899


  • Muratie Wine Estate Port Blend Stellenbosch Cape Vintage 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Appearances of black cherry coloration with hints of residue around the rim of my port glass...nice legs that dribble down the side of the inside of the glass. Aromas of licorice, oaked dark fruit, slight booze, Earthy berry tones and a mild lingering finish of mulberry, cranberry and dark cherries. Flavors that follow suit, with blackberry, b... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage


  • Southern Right Pinotage 2016

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by TimsterS


  • Kindred a Family Made Chenin Blanc Stellenbosch Boutinot 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by martins2002


  • Carmen Stevens Angel's Reserve Shiraz 2016

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by anstett


  • Swartland Limited Release Roussanne 2015

    Snoothrank:

    For you "punters" out there - and I was one once, and still am - in many fields - this South African Roussanne is an excellent intro to the best (in my opinion) white varietal of the Rhone. I try, but I cannot distinguish any difference between this wonderful wine and an expensive French alternative; the nose has a layered tisane note with a to... Read More

    Wine review by zufrieden


  • Robertson Winery Rosé Blend Natural Sweet Rose NV

    Snoothrank:

    outstanding taste. I'm a rookie wine consumer but love this taste. Not exceedingly sweet but certainly not dry Read More

    Wine review by ump15


  • Sirs, May you introduce me to a company that exports South African wines? My e-mail address is scmsprl@yahoo.fr Thanks, Constant Bopima M. Bokoto

    Comment by 1111044Bob Moelo 1111044 Bob Moelo


  • I am a South African, Capetonian, from Somerset West, right in the heart of the wine region. My heart misses home every day, but thankfully, being able to enjoy South African wine, especially reds, where one can taste South Africa in the terroir, helps me get through each day.

    Comment by 750105nikkibean 750105 nikkibean


  • "Late Harvest" was my favourite wine in the mid 80's when I lived in Zimbabwe, now I'd like to explore the South African reds and introduce them to my corporate wine events in the Silicone Valley. Peter M -Clubspot Bev (San Jose, Calif)

    Comment by 695810pmugwagwa 695810 pmugwagwa


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