Reyneke Wines, Stellenbosch
There’s a lot to be said for the way wine used to be made. Back when the Reyneke farm first began as ‘Uitzicht’ in 1863, there were no chemicals or technological advancements. Just the land and nature.
Uitzicht is perched overlooking Stellenbosch and False Bay. It has north, east and south facing slopes. The best land is planted with vines and the remainder complements the vineyards with pasture, compost-making and pockets of wilderness. If the farm can produce its own fertilizer and compost, this will mean it’s less dependent on trucking in fertilizer in clouds of diesel exhausts. If the farm is self sufficient, their own cow manure ‘costs’ the same every day, irrespective of the price of oil.
Biodynamic agriculture comes from a time when there was a spiritual understanding of life in general and farming in particular. We try to never lose sight of this, putting people first, naming our cows instead of numbering them, and even studying the weeds (rather than just yanking them out) to learn why they’re there.We've made great progress. We're nearly back where we started.
We believe there's a lot to be said for the way winemaking used to be. There were no chemicals, no "technological advancements" that made the process a process, and natural balance was more important than balance sheets. We like to think of it as ancient wisdom. And we embrace it as much as we can. Not just because it's better for the earth, but because it makes for better wine.