The Top 5 Producers from Swartland
Many of the winemakers in the Swartland are young and experimental, and they are not afraid to break the rules. This has led to a new wave of exciting wines from the Swartland, which are gaining international recognition.
DAVID AND NADIA
Founded by David Sadie and Nadia Newton Johnson in 2013, this husband-and-wife winery was born out of a love story! Their shared passion for wine and love for each other has inspired them to embark on this remarkable journey together!
Their thoughtful and sensitive approach to viticulture and winemaking has positioned them as one of Swartland's shining stars. They have also played a significant role in nurturing and restoring the region's old vineyards while embracing minimal intervention practices. Nadia's expertise as a soil scientist has been instrumental in their efforts to breathe new life into Swartland's remarkable collection of old vines.
Their main farm is located in Paardebosch, where they create exceptional single-vineyard wines from Skaliekop and Hoë-Steen. In addition to these vineyards, their portfolio includes a range of varietals such as Chenin Blanc, Grenache, Syrah, and more.
With a history tracing back to 1776, the current story of Boekenhoutskloof began in 1993 when it was purchased, restored, and a new vineyard planting program was established.
With approximately 20 hectares of vineyard, 75% of which are dedicated to red grape varieties, Boekenhoutskloof boasts a diverse range of grape varieties including Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Grenache, Semillon, Viognier, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, and Viognier.
Situated in the picturesque Franschhoek valley, Boekenhoutskloof, is currently under the leadership of Managing Partner & Technical Director Marc Kent.
The name of the winery, "Boekenhoutskloof," translates to "ravine of the Boekenhout," referring to the indigenous Cape Beech tree highly valued for furniture making.
With a strong commitment to sustainable practices, they meticulously craft wines that authentically reflect the unique terroir of the region.
MULLINEX & LEEU
Mullineux & Leeu is one of the most famous wineries in South Africa: Established in 2007 in the town of Riebeek-Kasteel, when Chris and Andrea Mullineux settled in the Swartland wine region, after working several years at wineries in France, South Africa and California, it was named ‘Winery of the Year five times by the Platter Guide in 2014, 2016, 2019, 2020 and 2023.
Their vineyards spread throughout 13 different farms and 4 different types of soils to produce outstanding Syrah, Chenin Blanc, and other traditional varietals like the Old Vine White.
Embracing a natural and minimalist philosophy in both their vineyards and cellar, they prioritise sustainable and thoughtful farming methods to create low-intervention wines, famously abstaining from using yeasts, acids, tannins, enzymes, as well as fining and filtering agents.
THE SADIE FAMILY WINES
The Sadie Family Wines originated in 1999 as a side project for Eben Sadie while he was working as a winemaker for Charles Back Wines. This boutique winery has a focus on terroir and produces a limited quantity of 500 cases of wine. Since the inaugural release of Columella with the 2000 vintage, Eben Sadie has gained a reputation as the most innovative and inspired winemaker in South Africa.
The estate encompasses 24 hectares of vineyards across Swartland, including plots in the mountains and coastal plains, all cultivated using organic and biodynamic farming practices.
Eben's primary goal is to capture the expression of a region or specific site. This philosophy guides the production of his Signature Series wines Columella and Palladius: Columella is a red blend primarily composed of Syrah, complemented by Mourvèdre, Grenache, Carignan, and Cinsault. Palladius is a white blend made from 11 different white grape varieties sourced from 17 vineyard sites. The leading role is played by old, bush-vine Chenin Blanc.
THORNE & DAUGHTERS
Thorne & Daughters is a boutique winery located in Swartland, established by John and Tasha Seccombe in 2012.
The focus of their winemaking is on producing small-batch wines that truly reflect the terroir of the region. They have curated a portfolio that comprises a variety of white and red blends, all crafted with meticulous attention to detail and a commitment to natural winemaking techniques.
The grapes used in their wines are sourced from 15 different growers across various regions, including Bot River, Stellenbosch, Voor Paardeberg, Swartland, Citrusdal, Franschhoek, and Overberg. John and Tasha deliberately sought to expand their sourcing beyond specific boundaries, allowing them to explore the synergy between people, place, soil, and vines.
At Thorne & Daughters, the winemaking approach is characterized by simplicity, honesty, and gentleness. As stated by their brand name, John and Tasha’s young daughters are involved in winemaking since a very early age, a true definition of a family-run business!
The goal of this winery is to create wines that tell a story of the Cape of Good Hope. While each relationship with the growers is unique, the winery strives to apply the principles of "lutte raisonnée" in their farming practices. This involves working closely with the growers to minimize or eliminate the use of chemical herbicides and fungicides, and to foster thriving soil health.