In your view, what makes your vineyards so special?
Delaire Graff Estate’s unique terroir on the crest of the panoramic Helshoogte Mountain Pass is noted for its high-altitude vineyards, excellent soils and cooling sea breezes. This combination of Maritime and mountain is what allows us to create award-winning wines.
How many varieties of wine do you produce and how many winemakers do you have?
Delaire Graff Estate produces a total of 12 varietals, consisting of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Merlot, Malbec, Shiraz, Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Tinta Barroca and Touriga Nacional.
I am the winemaker on the Estate and I’m joined by Riaan Schemper, an eager, equally passionate assistant winemaker.
Can you explain the process of winemaking in more detail?
Winemaking is a natural process that requires little human intervention, and each winemaker guides the process through different techniques. In general, there are five basic components of the winemaking process: harvesting, crushing and pressing, fermentation, clarification, and ageing and bottling.
For unwooded whites and rose wines this process can last anything from 6 – 8 months. Wooded whites undergo a 10 – 12-month winemaking process, whereas red wines tend to take up to 18 – 24 months.