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South African wine

Some of the best wine in the new world

South african wine is not a new thing; wine has been made there for over 300 years. To begin with, vines were cultivated to make Brandy and fortified wines, but now South Africa is one of the leading producers of New World wines. South Africa’s geography gives it the ideal Mediterranean climate for growing grapes. This African country has even contributed its own variety to the winemaking world, Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault that gives a juicy flavour of raspberries and blueberries accompanied by notes of chocolate and tobacco. This south african wine is denser and with a higher alcohol percentage than those made with the Pinot Noir variety.

South African Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah reds are also well-known and sought after. And then there’s Chenin Blanc, which is the most cultivated white variety and is also known as Steen. South African Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay wines are also popular and sought after. Be surprised by the south african wine! A great opportunity to explore this fascinating African country.

South African wine history

South Africa is the oldest wine producing country in the so-called new world. South African wine dates back to the colonial era, specifically the 17th century. At that time, a supply company was set up at the Cape of Good Hope for those travelling to the Indies. It was the company’s founder who decided to import and plant vines from Spain, France and Germany to make wine there. He thought that wine could reduce cases of scurvy among sailors.

Later, Cape Town's first governor Simon van der Stel planted vineyards in the old Wildebosch. He named his land Stellenbosch, which literally means “the forest of Van der Stel”.

For years South African wine had a good reputation and was exported worldwide. However, when Apartheid policies came into force, the wine sector stagnated and exports reduced along with the import of new technologies.

The turning point for South Africa, as well as its wines, was Nelson Mandela’s release from prison. Since then, there has been a true revolution in the country and trade barriers have been lifted, opening it up to the world.

South Africa is now the ninth largest wine producer in the world. South African producers closely follow international wine trends and have implemented the most advanced cultivation and winemaking methods in their vineyards and wineries. Thanks to all this, their wines can now be found in the majority of restaurants and specialist shops around the world.

South African wine classification

South African wine can be classified by origin (WO Wine of Origin). This classification was established in 1973 and divided South African vineyards by region. From largest to smallest, the regions are:

-Official Regions: The main regions are Coastal Region WO, covering six districts, and Breede River Valley Region WO, which has three districts and Boberg Region WO.

-Districts: In the Coastal Region WO there is Constantia District WO, Durbanville District WO, Paarls District WO, Stellenbosch District WO, Swartland District WO, Tulbagh District WO. There are also the three in the Breede River Valley Region WO: Worcester District WO, Robertson District WO, Swellendam District WO. Finally, there are other districts that are not part of a large region: Klein Karoo district WO, Olifantsrivier District WO, Overberg District WO, Piketberg District WO, Douglas WO, Andalusia WO and Benede-Oranje WO.

Finally there is the so-called Denomination-Ward: the smallest land units.

Climate and soils

The dominant climate in the Cape Region is Mediterranean: winters are quite cold and rainy and summers are dry and can be very hot. There are also the sea winds that help moderate extreme temperatures and help white grapes to grow.

The terrain shape also plays a key role in the quality of South African wines. South Africa is varied and diverse. There are granite, calcareous, sandy and clayey soils, all at different altitudes because the terrain is rugged. There are splendid valleys, steep mountains and lovely plains. This gives local producers a wide range of possibilities to express and interpret the terrain in various ways, resulting in diverse wines.

South African varieties and vineyards

White varieties are the most commonly cultivated in South Africa, accounting for around 55% of the over one hundred thousand hectares of vineyard. The most common white grape strains from most to least common are the -(local name for Chenin Blanc), the Hanepoot (Muscat of Alexandria), the Colombard, Sauvignon, Cape Riesling and Chardonnay. The reds we find are Cinsault, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage (cross between Cinsault and Pinot Noir) and Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir.

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Jordan Cobblers Hill 2020

South Africa WO Stellenbosch (Coastal Region)

An elegant red wine to honour the family with
Jordan Cobblers Hill 2020
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32.00
-5%
Price
30.39
VAT inc.
  • -5.03%
  • New

Delaire Graff Cabernet Franc Rose 2022

South Africa WO Stellenbosch (Coastal Region)

The perfect white to savour the freshness of summer
Delaire Graff Cabernet...
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16.70
-10%
Price
15.02
VAT inc.
  • -10.06%
  • New

Robertson Winery Pinotage 2023

South Africa Robertson (Western Cape South Coast)

Signature Robertson Valley Pinotage
Robertson Winery Pinotage 2023
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12.95
-10%
Price
11.65
VAT inc.
  • -10.04%
  • New

David & Nadia Elpidios 2021

South Africa Wine of Origin Swartland (Coastal Region)

A Swartland discovery in the style of a young Châteauneuf-du-Pape
David & Nadia Elpidios 2021
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96

Parker

94

Suckling

32.90
-10%
Price
29.60
VAT inc.
  • -10.03%
  • New

False Bay Whole Bunch Rosé 2023

South Africa WO Stellenbosch (Coastal Region)

A refined rosé made from old coastal vines
False Bay Whole Bunch Rosé...
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7.00
-10%
Price
6.29
VAT inc.
  • -10.14%
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False Bay Bushvine Pinotage 2022

South Africa WO Stellenbosch (Coastal Region)

A Pinotage from the Bay’s terroir
False Bay Bushvine Pinotage...
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7.00
-10%
Price
6.29
VAT inc.
  • -10.14%
  • New

The Chocolate Block 2022

South Africa Wine of Origin Swartland (Coastal Region)

Authentic Swartland personality
The Chocolate Block 2022
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91

Suckling

31.70
-10%
Price
28.52
VAT inc.
  • -10.03%
  • New

Boekenhoutskloof Semillon 2021

South Africa Franschhoek (Western Cape South Coast)

Delicate and elegant
Boekenhoutskloof Semillon 2021
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94

Suckling

45.00
-10%
Price
40.49
VAT inc.
  • -10.02%
  • New

Reyneke Biodynamic Syrah 2019

South Africa WO Stellenbosch (Coastal Region)

Sensory fulfillment from a holistic viewpoint
Reyneke Biodynamic Syrah 2019
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93

Decántalo

18.40
-10%
Price
16.55
VAT inc.
  • -10.05%
  • New

Robertson Winery Shiraz 2023

South Africa Robertson (Western Cape South Coast)

A rich and well integrated single-variety red wine
Robertson Winery Shiraz 2023
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12.85
-5%
Price
12.20
VAT inc.
  • -5.06%
  • New

Jordan The Prospector Syrah 2021

South Africa WO Stellenbosch (Coastal Region)

Chipotle and mild and tasty spices
Jordan The Prospector Syrah...
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91

Decántalo

16.85
-10%
Price
15.16
VAT inc.
  • -10.03%
  • New

Mullineux Granite Chenin Blanc 2022

South Africa Wine of Origin Swartland (Coastal Region)

Chenin blanc with a mineral touch and deep elegance
Mullineux Granite Chenin...
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94

Parker

94

Suckling

75.40
-5%
Price
71.62
VAT inc.
  • -5.01%
  • New

The Sadie Family Palladius 2021

South Africa Wine of Origin Swartland (Coastal Region)

A delicious palette of 17 white varieties
The Sadie Family Palladius...
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96

Parker

96

Suckling

Price
109.50
VAT inc.
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Sadie Family Soldaat 2022

South Africa Wine of Origin Swartland (Coastal Region)

The work of one of South Africa's finest viticulturists
Sadie Family Soldaat 2022
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65.10
-5%
Price
61.84
VAT inc.
  • -5.01%
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Spioenkop 1900 Pinotage 2020

South Africa Elgin (Western Cape South Coast)

An ode to the area
Spioenkop 1900 Pinotage 2020
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30.80
-5%
Price
29.25
VAT inc.
  • -5.03%
  • New