A UNIQUE TERROIR
Most of the Cape’s winegrowing regions are influenced by one of the two mighty oceans which meet at this southernmost tip of Africa: the
Coupled to this, a winemaking tradition and history dating back more than 300 years blends the restrained elegance of the Old World with the accessible fruit-driven styles of the New, making for wines which eloquently express the unique terroir of the
The Concept of Terroir
While currently topical, terroir is not a new concept. Terroir refers to the natural features of a body of land which interact to create a unique set of conditions that in turn confer specific characteristics on the wines produced there. Key factors include topography, climate, geology and soil. From 200 BC to 200 AD, Georgic authors already underlined the role played by the environment in viticulture both at a macro and meso scale, and the importance of choosing the site according to the cultivars to be planted. This concept has formed the basis of many geographical indication systems, including the Wine of Origin System in
All around the world, the identification of viticultural terroir is receiving a lot of attention, backed by an increasing demand by the consumer for knowledge and understanding of the origin of each wine produced. Although falling within the warmer winegrowing zones, the
As the research continues, so does the ongoing debate about which inter-related environmental factors are the most important in influencing the outcome of the wines. This is not simply an academic exercise but a committed attempt to grow better wines, part of a focused shift from grape farming to wine growing.