We want to spend the most romantic evening of the year with you!

Imagine the setting – pretty picnic spots under the Swartland skies.

What: An outdoor movie screening, pizza from our wood fired oven, very local wine, popcorn and our family recipe ice cream. This is classic date night stuff!

When: Thursday 14 February, from 7pm (movie screening at 8).
Where: the lawns of Kalmoesfontein, Paardeberg, Swartland, South Africa.
Why: cause we can like to be romantic too. 
Costs: R450pp, but ideally you come in pairs…

To book, email semma@aabadenhorst.com – only 12 couple spots left.
You can order extra (Badenhorst) wine of your choice too and there are accommodation options available for the night.
We are still debating which movie, so that will be a surprise…
ps. I would go JUST for that ice cream!

Hello harvest my old friend…

And then it was February- goodness. We’ve been very busy on the farm; first prepping the cellar and new cold room for harvest, then waiting for grapes and after a rather hectic heatwave everything seemed to come at the same time. The Chenin Blanc anyway.

 

With Jasper now heading up his own cellar down the dust road Hanneke Botha has stepped up to head the team in the day to day of the cellar. Luckily for her and us Keiji has joined us from Japan for the third year and we have a few more pairs of hard working hands joining the regular crew this season.

In the next few weeks I will try to catch them all for a short interview (somehow between 4:30am starts, staggered lunch times and closing shop at 19:30 they have very little time for social media mangers…)

Here’s a few pics, keep an eye on our Instagram account @aabadenhorst for day to day blow by blow action.

Grafting

This week we started grafting some shoots.

Grafting or graftage (just sounds like the kind of word that needs to be in italics) is a horticultural technique whereby tissues of plants are joined so as to continue their growth together. We have joined Chenin Blanc, Palomino and Ugni Blanc scions onto an old Red Globe root systems. These grapes will in future be used for brandy wine production…

Ugni Blanc? At first my phone corrected it to Agri Blanc – so I had to read up more.

And no surprise I hadn’t heard of the varietal also known as Trebbiano before; Wikipedia (that wonderful deep well of knowledge) lists synonyms for it as “Albano, Albana secco, Biancone, Blanc Auba, Blanc De Cadillac, Blancoun, Bobiano, Bonebeou, Branquinha, Brocanico, Bubbiano, Buriano, Buzzetto, Cadillac, Cadillate, Castelli, Castelli Romani, Castillone, Chator, Clairette D’Afrique, Clairette De Vence, Clairette Ronde, Engana Rapazes, Espadeiro branco, Falanchina, Greco, Gredelin, Hermitage White, Juni Blan, Lugana, Malvasia Fina, Muscadet Aigre, Padeiro branco, Perugino, Procanico, Procanico Dell Isola D Elba, Procanico Portoferraio, Queue De Renard, Romani, Rossan De Nice, Rossetto, Rossola, Rossula, Roussan, Roussea, Rusciola, Saint Emilion, Saint Emilion Des Charentes, Santoro, Shiraz White, Spoletino, Talia, Trebbianello, Trebbiano, Trebbiano Della Fiamma, Trebbiano Di Cesene, Trebbiano Di Empoli, Trebbiano Di Lucca, Trebbiano Di Tortona, Trebbiano Fiorentino, Trebbiano Toscano, Trebbianone, Tribbiano, Tribbiano Forte, Turbiano, Ugni blanc, Bouan, Beau, Thalia, Trebbiano di Soave, Trebbiano Romagnolo, Trebbiano Gallo and Trebbiano d’Abruzzo.

Trebbiano shares at least three synonyms with the Spanish wine grape Viura including Queue de Renard, Rossan, Ugni blanc and the similarly spelled Gredelín/Gredelin.”

Yup! In short – it is an Italian wine grape, one of the most widely planted grape varieties in the world. It gives good yields, but tends to yield undistinguished wine. Its high acidity makes it important in Cognac productions. En van daar die brannewyn planne.

And so, hopefully, you learn something new every day! Stay tuned for more informative updates, we’re excited to watch this develop.

A wine club kind-of Sunday

On Sunday we hosted the first lunch aimed at starting our own wine club! Guests who braved the cold, wet weather were well rewarded.

Charl and Semma put on a feast of a lunch while Adi pulled bottles of wine from deep corners of the cellar.

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The menu looked a little something like this:

Starters of braaibroodjies with roasted vine tomatoes, mozzarella & red onion marmalade and slow cooked lamb ribs.

Mains included deboned roast lamb with baked potatoes; chicken Ceasar salad and baked whole brown mushrooms with garlic butter and green beans.

Dessert was bread and butter pudding, served with cream.

Our official, very well thought out club offer will go out to everyone who responded to our call for interest.

End the year, our way!

As you might know by now, more Badenhorsts have joined us on the Paardeberg. This time in the form of brother Charl and his wife Semma – this power couple moved to the berg in January to help manage the farm, with Semma focussing on accommodation and events.

Which means we get to throw parties during harvest time and make more brides happy and now, add new additions to our repertoire. Like end of year shindings…

Yup, the end of the year is approaching, flippin fast! We suspect that you (and your staff) aren’t blown away by the idea of another end-of-year event at some city bar (or worse, the boardroom in your office…)

That’s why we, the AA Badenhorst family team, have decided to put on our thinking caps and combine our years of diverse event experience and party planning – to come up with something special for your team!

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I mean – between us we’ve styled, hosted, planned and conceptualised things on five continents. We’ve been curating our little piece of the Paardeberg for the last decade, but our roots in the Swartland go back generations. We’ve worked with the likes of Visi, Afrikaburn, Elle, Sanctuary Retreats, Sense of Africa, Burning Man (and lots of wonderful things in between) and can create, design and flawlessly execute gatherings of all shapes and sizes.

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On our working wine farm, at the end of a dusty road on the slopes of the Paardeberg, we are known for unique experiences. And the bonus is, within an hour from Cape Town’s CBD you will feel like you are in a different country!

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We can offer wine /vermouth /tonic /port /mezcal tastings; cellar tours; banquets; hikes; throw-downs under the maypole; live music / DJs; outdoor screenings; glamping and more. As with any event we do, this will be customised as an individual package, according to company needs and with complete exclusivity guaranteed.

If you are looking for an out-of-the-ordinary finale this year you have found it. Start with a e-mail to semma@aabadenhorst.com and we’ll take it from there.

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(all images from #agencydayout on instagram)

Vineyard internships

If Samuel and Ana thought their holiday internships with the family business was over now that they are back on the farm, they would not have appreciated this morning’s wake up call.

Following the recent rains (hip hip hooray) and with the soils nice and wet, we are planting some new vineyards. Yesterday we started with Grenache and today the kids got their hands and boots dirty to help out.

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Seems Ana is the only one who didn’t get the “working man’s blue” dress code memo. Rebel that one.

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Like Adi says, “they are planting vines for their kids, no pressure…”

Once this vineyard is ticked off the list, in the next week or two we will also plant Cinsault, Palomino and some rootstock in-between, for later grafting.

Supplementing the old with the new. Cause one day what is new and young now will be old too…

New stock [images]

 

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Last week we had our friend Maree and her camera on the farm to shoot some library images for us (it had been five years since we last did it, and a LOT changes on Kalmoesfontein in five years…)

Here is just a sneak peak for your enjoyment. It is nice to see the evolution through the lens of a proper camera (and not an #iphone with #instagram filters!)


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We also shot some photos for new fact sheets for the Badenhorst, Secateurs and single vineyard ranges. Watch this space, we’ll upload them to the site when ready and if you are in the trade, lekker things are on their way – for you and your customers to get a sense of where our wines come from.

Photos: Maree Louw.

#harvest2018

All the grapes are in and things are starting to slow down (a little bit) in the cellar.

Harvest 2018 was late, tough, fast and small. But the fruit looks good and the juice is tasty.

 

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Some interesting notes and figures I spotted in the “grape intake book” include:

15 tons of Muscat de Frontignan (for Caperitif)

on 23 Feb an interesting combination of red grapes came in with a note “Port 2018″…

3,4tons of Raaigras Grenache (pictured above) and

431 kissies of Ramnasgras Cinsault…

 

Harvest Lunch

In the past we’ve been very serious about the “no nothing during harvest” rule. You may have even been on the receiving end of a “no-sorry/are-you-mad? never-in-harvest!” mail…

But that was back in the day when the team was tight and the person doing the tasting would have also been the person braaiing the meat and switching on the pump.

Now we are growing up fast. Early this year Adi’s brother Charl and his lovely wife Semma joined us in the Swartland, and with their wealth of experience in client relations and playing host they have added a new dimension to what we can offer.

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So, this February we hosted a few lunches for international groups. Adi’s mom Judy cooks, Semma and Charl hosts and helps prepare food, Cornelia makes everything look amazing and I just have to put out tasting glasses and spittoons while Adi only has to make a quick appearance, tell a joke and pour some wine.

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Basically what this post is saying is: You don’t have to be scared to ask us to host a group of people in harvest time any more!

Mail Semma on semma@aabadenhorst.com and you might just be in luck.

Groups of 10 – 30 preferred. aalunch3