The Southernmost Wine Route in Africa
The Cape of Storms has unleashed a different kind of storm over the past decade - and this one is not in a teacup, but in a glass! Five pioneer wine growers have worked together to ultimately use the environmental extremities of the Agulhas Plain to produce an outstanding range of wines that is literally taking the world by storm.
They have learnt, by trial and error, how to avoid bottle shock and how to blend grape varieties, flavours and cultivars to create wines that truly capture the essence of the vines growing on the southernmost tip of Africa.
There is something decadently divine about sipping and sampling the wines of the newest and southernmost wine route in Africa bordering the stormy, windswept Agulhas coastal plains.
A leisurely drive along the tarred R43 between the quaint missionary village of Elim and Bredasdorp takes you past the impressive six wineries on the Elim Wine Route - Zoetendal Winery, Quoin Rock, The Berrio, Black Oystercatcher Strandveld Vineyards, home of First Sighting wines and Lomond. All six wineries offer wine-tasting, sales and tours by appointment and boast a variety of delicious red, white and rosé wines.
Few people thought it would be possible to produce wine in this area known for its environmental extremes - a wild, untamed world adjacent to the notorious Cape of Storms where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet and conflicting currents and winds combine to create mammoth waves.
The Agulhas Plain is home to one of the richest biodiversities in the world, equivalent to that of a tropical rainforest. Thousands of flora species flourish in this region characterised by outstretched sand plains, wetlands, gravelly bottomlands and extensive limestone and calcareous dunes. Until a few years ago, all five wineries used to be agricultural or cattle and sheep farms. Even the "new" winegrowers are pleasantly surprised at the amazing success they achieve by experimenting with different blends, cultivars and flavours. The consistantly cool, moderate climate between Elim and Cape Agulhas and the mineral-rich soil have proven to be perfect for making a fine range of wines - especially Sauvignon Blancs.
Come explore this wild, versatile world and taste the sublime fruit of the vines nurtured into perfection by nature’s extreme forces. The perpetual cool winds that blow across the plain from the southeast in summer and the northwest in winter encourage the grapes to ripen gradually to healthy, concentrated fruit.