The first vintage of Vondeling wines made from our own grapes was in 2005. There are now approximately 100 hectares of vineyard, mostly planted to Mediterranean varietals. Most are planted in granitic soils and on cooler south west facing slopes. The older vineyards, which include Sauvignon Blanc planted in 1983 and Chenin Blanc in 1986, have come into perfect balance over the years and provide some of our most valuable fruit. On average, crop yields range between six to eight tons per hectare.
Minimal intervention during the winemaking process ensures wines with a unique ‘fingerprint’ of origin. The day’s fruit, carefully picked in the cool of the early mornings, is transported in lug boxes to a refrigerated storeroom adjoining the cellar where the grapes are cooled down to 6°C. This is followed by destemming and berry sorting by hand. The winery, a cleverly converted milking shed, is equipped with a raised trussed ceiling and open-top stainless steel tanks for extra gentle handling of fruit. Separate vinification of specific blocks and natural fermentations are an integral part of the process. Basket pressing, hand plunging, minimal filtering and no fining also feature in the hands-on approach.
Wines are matured in first-, second- and third-fill French oak barrels in the atmospheric barrel maturation cellar with its thick clay walls and rietdak ceiling.
There’s a 50/50 red to white varietal ratio with a distinctly Mediterranean slant when it comes to more recent plantings.
White wine varieties: Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Muscadel, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Semillon, Roussanne.
Red wine varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Grenache Noir, Merlot, Mourvèdre, Shiraz.