Its been 4 years in the making. We finally got to harvest the maiden vintage of the hill Syrah at Weltevreden in Stellenbosch on the 3rd of February 2023. This has been one of the most difficult vineyards to establish (read the previous posts on this vineyard), but through endless effort and hundreds of hours of work from Bennie Booysen and his team, we finally get to harvest the fruit.
For the maiden vintage we had Pieter Walser (Owner and winemaker at BlankBottle Winery) come in and take care of the winemaking. Pieter has been on this site with me from the start. He understands the significance this vineyard has, not only in Stellenbosch, but in the bigger context of the South African viticulture scene. A benchmark of vineyard design and execution, and the inspiration for another 4 Syrah vineyards that has been planted in Stellenbosch and Elgin in the past 4 years.
Extreme viticulture is not always the best. The execution of these projects is what usually sinks these projects. Team work is key. Trust is essential.
We were very honoured to have Thomas Fayolle of Domaine des Martinelles of the Rhône Valley here with us for the first harvest. André and myself travelled to Hermitage in July 2022 and met up with the Fayolles and had an amazing time. The Fayolles are great friends with a few people here in South Africa and Thomas is here for the harvest with Lukas van Loggerenberg.
Thats it for this post. Stoked with the quality of the grapes. The wine will write the next chapter.