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

Mary John Baumann, DWS

Accredited wine expert with advanced wine education, sales and lecturing talent. Creative marketer with demonstrated success in global marketing and development of leading multinational luxury brands.

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Popular wines made in South Africa under $20

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Varietals Produced in South Africa View all

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Syrah

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

  • Pinotage

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

  • Chenin Blanc

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

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

  • Robertson Winery

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

  • Jam Jar

    Jam Jar was born out of the realization that there are not a lot of options available to consu...

  • Meerlust

    Long recognized for producing world-class wines, Meerlust Estate has been the pride of the Myb...

  • Spier Cellars

    THE SPIER EXPERIENCE Spier is one of the Stellenbosch winelands’ most celebrated destinations. T...

  • Hamilton Russell Vineyards

    Hamilton Russell Vineyards is one of the most southerly wine Estates in Africa and one of the clo...

  • Neil Ellis Wines

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

Page 301 of 329

South Africa on Snooth

  • Springfield Firefinch Ripe Red 2004


    I found this a full bodied, complex wine, Clusters of berries on the nose, ... ... i've not had much luck with south african reds of lat Read More

    Wine review by kayjay

  • Warwick Estate Sauvignon Blanc Stellenbosch Professor Black 2006


    No written review

    Wine review by Newbiwon Kenobi

  • Seven Sisters Rose Pinotage 2007


    No written review

    Wine review by Ryan Moynagh

  • Overgaauw Stellenbosch 1995


    Found this little gem in the back of a mate's shed, and what can I say? delicious, lingering palate, deep clay red colour, hint of mulberries and a noticeable oak taste as well as aroma. The only real thing i can complain about is that the cork did a bit of a Hanse Cronje and took a dive in the drink. All in all, I'm glad there's another 5 bottl... Read More

    Wine review by Ryan Vandervalk

  • Golden Kaan Sauvignon Blanc Western Cape 2006


    Really nice balance between fruit and acidity. Classic Sauvignon Blanc character plus attractive grapefruit notes. Great cocktail hour wine as well. Pairings: Asparagus & Proscuitto Omelet or Frittata, Grilled Tuna with Citrus Butter, Asian Chicken Salad and Citrus marinated scallops. Read More

    Wine review by Jasper

  • Golden Kaan Pinotage 2005


    Just tasted the 2005 vintage - yummy! Aromas of green olives, sage and tobacco with cranberry fruit flavors and refined tannins. Pairings: Roast Leg of Lamb Read More

    Wine review by Jasper

  • Golden Kaan Chardonnay 2005


    Appealing aromas/flavors of yellow apple. Well balanced between fruit and oak. Would pair very well with roast chicken and crab cakes. Read More

    Wine review by Jasper

  • Spier Signature Pinotage 2005


    Average. Read More

    Wine review by Salmanazar9

  • Rudera Chenin Blanc 2005


    very refreshing and crisp. enjoyable alone or with some earthy cheese Read More

    Wine review by akops41

  • Cape Point Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc 2006


    No written review

    Wine review by Piccolo9

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