Good report cards

The Tim Atkin SA Report 2017 is out and we got a table of wines on the 90+ list!

Say’s Tim: “Both at home and overseas, there is a growing awareness of the winemaking and viticultural revolution that is unfolding in the Cape. Consumers worldwide are becoming increasingly passionate about South African wines. And not before time! My annual report is, I hope, a part of that success.”

It sure is Tim!

Our school report reads as follows:

Tim Atkin Report 2017

Not too shabby hey Nige.

Label of love part 1.

If you’ve ever had a bottle of our wine (or Caperitif or Swaan Tonic) in your hands and took some time to examine the label you would have noticed a lot of detail. But did you know each detail has a story, a connection to our journey and our family?

No? Well let me enlighten you. In this post we’ll look at the horseshoe and the three headed bird (sometimes a goose, sometimes a swan, never a sparrow).

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The three headed bird:

Yes, three heads are “trippier” than one, as Adi likes to point out, but in actual fact the meaning here refers to three generations of Badenhorst farmers.

Adi and cousin Hein’s grandfather was the farm manager of Groot Constantia for 46 years, their fathers were born there and farmed together in Constantia, making Adi and Hein the third generation. Adi obviously farms and makes wine in the Swartland while Hein has an olive farm in Prince Albert, amongst others.

The horseshoe:

The horseshoe is probably one of the most well-known good luck symbols of the Western world and has a long history as a protective symbol.

The symbol is quite common in Egyptian iconography. It is a very auspicious symbol, a charm used to protect against any form of evil and bring good luck. Read more here.

IMG_3726On Kalmoesfontein you’ll find a few horses and plenty of horseshoes above cellar and other doors.

Keep an eye out for these symbols on our products and on this blog for more fascinating facts…

Swartland Heritage Celebration

It is true, come November there will once again be a unique regional wine experience to attend. Like at the very successful Swartland Revolution of the past the Swartland Independent Producers want to share the good food, stunning scenery and diverse (award winning) wine of the region with fans and friends. This time in the scenic West Coast town of Paternoster!

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That’s right. International speakers, masterclasses, talks, tastings and music. And what the poster doesn’t tell you is that renowned local chef Bertus Basson has been confirmed as the weekend’s chef. Snacks, dinner, lunch…

For more info on the event and to buy tickets head over the the SIP website.

For more info on Bertus and his ventures, click here.

Please order tickets by emailing RSVP@studio-h.co.za – Book now, you will not be disappointed.

And we’re off!

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After a few weeks of quiet cellar preparations the first grapes have arrived.

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And the winner is:

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Two tons of Palomino came in from the Sout van die Aarde (Afrikaans, meaning Salt of the Earth) vineyard on the West Coast this morning!

I was too late and the boys in the cellar too busy (sticky fingers) to get a picture but I have been assured that the grapes are looking beautiful!

Meanwhile, the vintage might change but the rules stay the same:

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While The Guardian proclaimed Grenache the toughest grape in the world and Forbes put the Swartland on their list of the top 12 underrated wine regions to visit in 2017.

We happen to have the oldest Grenache in the Swartland on Kalmoesfontein, so be sure to (make an appointment to!!) come visit us soon (and by soon I mean AFTER the harvest.)

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Here’s to a five-star 2017!

February on the farm

Exciting times:

Our friends Jon came to take areal shots of the farm with is drone – that’s my home!

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99% of the grapes are in for harvest 2016.

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We hosted the International Food and Wine Society for a “mini revolution” complete with Adi, Andrea, Callie and Eben, Where is Callie placemats, a harvest buffet by Judy Badenhorst and an informal SIP tasting. IMG_0183IMG_0192IMG_0196

Caperitif also received some great publicity – keep an eye on its website for more!

In the harvest time…

It feels like this heatwave has been ongoing for ever. Forever I tell you. When it is still 30’C at 10pm it is hard to imagine it will ever cool down again, ever!

But, life goes on and the grapes are starting to come in. Last week our first Shiraz was picked, 22 tons of it! Meanwhile there is some good international publicity and a few nice emails from the other side of the world.

“You know that South African cinsault we tried?” he said. “I took the opened bottle to a dinner with a load of wine trade people and they went mad for it and said it was the best wine of the night. They were raving on and on about it.”

To read more from The Telegraph on our Ramnasgras, click here.

This morning I woke up to a very nice little note of thanks and praise from a family snowed in in Michigan, USA… hard to imagine in the dry hot Swartland summer, but nice to receive anyway:

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“a little vacation in a bottle,” like!

On a side note, if you were lucky enough to get tickets to Cape Town’s very first Gin & Tonic Festival, taking place next Saturday, keep an eye out for Swaan, we will be mixing with some exciting new local gins!

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Enthusiastic Revolutionaries

We love this story from the latest issue of Wine Enthusiast. Written by Lauren Buzzeo, photographed by Maree Louw (on Kalmoesfontein) and styled by Cornelia Badenhorst, the article is a beautiful feature of the original revolutionaries – Eben Sadie ‘The Virtuoso’, Callie Louw ‘The Farmer’, Chris and Andrea Mullineux ‘The Dynamic Duo’ and Adi ‘The Personality’.

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WS aug14 3To read the full story online, click here.

For more about The Swartland Revolution, visit our website.  

 

The end is near…

As the end of the 2014 harvest starts to come into our sights, here are some pictures from the last few weeks.

late night pasta.

late night pasta.

Cellar innovation!

Cellar innovation!

A Swartland style siesta...

A Swartland style siesta…

Pressing Koffieklip Shiraz!

Pressing Koffieklip Shiraz!

pressing 1985 Steen (Chenin Blanc) after a two year sabbatical. Small berries big taste hey...

pressing 1985 Steen (Chenin Blanc) after a two year sabbatical. Small berries big taste hey…

a cellar of steel!

a cellar of steel!

Samuel's tank, 2014 Vintage.

Samuel’s tank, 2014 Vintage.

Spier Secret

This weekend it was time for the 2nd annual Spier Secret Festival (at Spier, obviously).

They celebrate Chenin Blanc (as we all should)

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and Nicole was there to pour our latest Secateurs.

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While at the food market Yoliswa sold her (world famous, if you consider the guests who have enjoyed them at our cottage on Kalmoesfontein) rusks under the trees.

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Yoliswa was very happy with her sales and is already thinking of expanding her business. We would like to thank everyone who helped her make this a success, especially Varenka who designed the packaging.

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Chenin photos with thanks to The Chenin Blanc Association of SA. View more here.