The name Delaire means ‘from the eyrie’, a suitable name for an estate situated at the apex of the Helshoogte Pass on the slopes of the Botmaskop Mountain. It was planted and named by John and Erica Platter in the 1980’s for it’s birds-eye views over the Banghoek Valley.
Current owner, Laurence Graff, first visited Delaire Estate in 2003 and bought it almost immediately. The north-facing slopes of Botmaskop are ideal for high-quality viticulture and the 20 acres of vineyards planted with Bordeaux reds and Chardonnay produce supremely elegant vintages.
With water-wise gardens planted by renowned horticulturalist, Keith Kirsten featuring more than 350 plant species – 70 percent of which are indigenous – and vineyards managed by hand, the natural environment at Delaire Graff Estate is carefully tended to maintain a delicate balance. Organic, home-grown and ethically sourced produce is used wherever possible throughout Delaire Graff Estate. Any food waste from the kitchens and offices is put to good use and converted into compost at the estate wormery, which is used to nourish the gardens, and biodegradable packaging is widely used. By committing to best practices, the ongoing preservation of the inherited biodiversity at Delaire is assured and local bird and insect species are flourishing.
Various initiatives and programmes have been launched at Delaire Graff Estate to facilitate the growth and development of staff, and to ensure members of the Estate community always feel supported. These are diverse and range from a fully funded Delaire Graff football team and health-oriented staff canteen to skills training and access to affordable health care. Where possible, Delaire is committed to hiring employees directly from the surrounding winelands.
The grapes for this 100% Merlot were handpicked in the early hours of the morning from the Estate’s oldest single vineyard. Extensive sorting of the grapes formed part of the quality management process. The grapes were de-stemmed only, not crushed, to ensure gentle extraction of fruit flavours and matured for 16 months in 80% new French oak barrels.