Husband-and-wife team, Chris and Suzaan Alheit, produce exclusive white wines under this family label from heritage-variety vineyards across the Western Cape. The Alheit’s goal is to produce wines with a clear Cape identity. They want to show that the Cape’s vinous heritage is worth celebrating and protecting, that old vineyards and ‘ordinary grapes’ are in fact wonderful, and that their winemakers are only just scratching the surface of what’s possible in the Cape. The Alheits and those who work with them believe in farming as close to nature as they can, and encouraging naturally healthy soil. They believe that this is paramount in making fine wine. ‘Dead soil,’ they say, ‘gives dead wine’.
This vineyard – which includes Chardonnay, Roussanne, Verdelho, Chenin blanc, Viognier, and Muscat Blanc a Petit Grain – was planted by Hans Evenhuis on the gravelly clay and sandstone of Hemelrand, 360 metres above sea level, in 2010. ‘The wine,’ says Chris, ‘is bottled just as the vineyard produces it, creating a white field blend that changes every year depending on the vintage conditions. The vineyard is cold and windy – a very marginal site. Grapes ripen slowly here. We have high hopes for this place.’