The Foundry Wine Collection was established on a shoestring budget in 2001 by Chris Williams (who narrowly escaped a career in law thanks to his passion for wine) and his great friend James Reid. Following his law degree, Chris enrolled at Elsenberg Agricultural College to study viticulture and oenology after which he worked as understudy winemaker to Giorgio Dalla Cia at the Meerlust Estate in Stellenbosch. He also spent some time in Bordeaux where he developed his love for all things French, including the classic wine regions. After six vintages at Meerlust, Chris left to establish the South African operations of Boutinot LLC, a Manchester, UK-based wine company. In 2003 Chris spent one vintage at Delaire Vineyards after which he was lured back to Meerlust to become cellar master in charge of all wine production in 2004. After sixteen more years at Meerlust, Chris left in December 2019 to establish a winery on shareholder James Reid’s Paardeberg. The first vintage of The Foundry was vinified at the Myburghs of Joostenburg winery in Paarl. There was no room for the barrels in their barrel room, and so they were accommodated in the old blacksmiths’ workshop – and so ‘The Foundry’ was born. From 2020 The Foundry has a new home in the Voor-Paardeberg area.
Working closely with a handful of growers, long-term contracts have been concluded for specific rows of vines to meet The Foundry’s demand for high quality fruit which is expressive of its source vineyards. The Foundry Roussanne come from a small parcel of vines grown on granite soils.