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.

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…

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!