Words: Richard Holmes | Images: Supplied

While the Vergelegen estate dates back to 1700, it’s only in the last 30 years that the estate has become famous for producing fine wines.

That began in 1987 with the purchase of the farm by Anglo American, who commissioned extensive soil studies before replanting vineyards across the estate. A unique gravity flow cellar was constructed in 1992 and since winemaker Andre van Rensburg arrived in 1998, the estate has cemented its position as one of the leading wineries in the Cape.

The focus is firmly on the cultivars of Bordeaux, and the likes of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc form the backbone of the Vergelegen range. That begins with four wines in the Premium range. The most affordable in the Vergelegen portfolio, these easy-drinking and approachable wines deliver good value for money.

The Reserve range is a noticeable step up in price and quality, with an enticing mix of blends and single-varietals. The Sauvignon Blanc from a single sea-facing vineyard is superb, while the Semillon is a wonderful example of this unsung Bordeaux cultivar.

Equally interesting is the DNA, a Bordeaux-style blend dominated by Cabernet Franc, a cultivar fast growing a following among local cellars. The range also extends to a Chardonnay Méthode Cap Classique and elegant Straw Wine.

But it’s up in the Flagship range where Andre is really making his mark with a trio of world-class wines. While the Vergelegen V is well beyond the budget of most wine-lovers, the pair of Vergelegen GVB wines – “Grown, Vinified, Bottle” – are well worth the spend for a special occasion. Both classic Bordeaux blends, the GVB Red is driven by Cabernet Sauvignon, while the GVB White is an equal marriage of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc.

The stylish tasting room at the entrance to the estate’s famous gardens, offers tastings and cellar tours, but reservations are recommended.

021 847 2122