My admiration for those wineries which have taken the decision to go organic, both in vineyard and cellar, and get certified to that effect, is considerable and ongoing. Not only does it involve much extra work, both physical and written, but this worthy dimension adds substantially to the cost of wine production.
Reyneke Organic Wines was the first South African wine farm to be certified as such for both grape growing and production. They have gone one step further, practising biodynamic viti -and viniculture on their Polkadraai farm Uitzicht.
As most readers know, this means firstly that the vineyards are herbicide, pesticide and fungicide-free and, in order to be self-sustaining, they recycle wherever possible. They work in harmony with the moon, and study the constellations to create fine wines, working at nature’s pace, following natural and cosmic cycles. It all makes for a holistic environment in synergy with their vegetable gardens, animal husbandry and people, along with conserving pockets of indigenous fynbos..
Reyneke Biodynamic syrah 2015 has already impressed both local and overseas critics and understandably so. The nose, aromatic with berry flavours gives way to a palate where fruit and spices mingle, while substantial tannins, add weight. But the freshness and purity – consistently present in Johan’s wines – are there, adding up to well balanced complexity that will continue to develop over the next few years. Moderate 13% alcohol levels are in keeping. At R175 it’s reasonably priced, given its pedigree.
The biodynamic range consists of four reds and four white wines, and there is a pair of organic wines in addition.
It’s worth noting that the farm is open for sales on weekdays,but visitors need to make an appointment for tastings, vineyard walks and cellar tours. Contact 021 881 3517.