Swartland Grapeheart
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Lammershoek Private Wine Cellar
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Nativo Wines
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Nuweland Wines
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1. "Haut" Ek sê!
2. How Kasteelberg got its name.


"Haut" Ek sê!

Ever since the Swartland learned to speak English, it has been playing catch-up. Farmers became bored of only driving up and down vast expanses with the mothers of combine harvesters. The womenfolk stopped using hairspray (although, Malmesbury still sports a stiff ‘70’s coiffure). They learnt about the hippie movement, mastered soccer rules and started making wine outside of the co-op environment.

As the natives became sophisticated, it became fashionable for even more sophisticated people to move to the Swartland. Riebeek Kasteel is now so sophisti-cated that it has 3 four way stops, 16 restaurants and 49 estate agents.

The Paardeberg also became next level sophisticated when a sign went up on the Paardeberg Road that read “Wine Route”. If you followed the sign you would have found no grand tasting rooms, no velvet green lawns with peacocks, no ex-model -ex-wives , no giant Great Danes relieving themselves against transplanted oak trees.... nada, zilch, nothing. Except for the cellars, small enough for the wine maker to know each and every barrel and tank, modern enough to make the best and being operated by the owners themselves. The dust that the natives of Lammershoek, Babylon’s Peak and Annexkloof caused on this road just became bigger when they were joined by Baby Jesus (Sadie), Elvis Presley (Badenhorst) and the Oracle (Pendock).

Against Kasteelberg, Harry Potter & wife (Mullineux family) dared to open a cellar smack bang in the middle of Riebeek Kasteel. Brilliant wisdom lead him to realise that if the rest of the wine lands are buying Paardeberg grapes, then Paardeberg grapes must be hot. If the Paardeberg wine makers buy grapes from Kasteelberg slopes then Kasteelberg grapes must be magic. As a consequence Kasteelsig (Hughes Family) and Mountain View (Farm 1120 & Santa Cecilia) now also make limited quantities of wine from their own vineyards.

There are other Swartlanders , such as Eikeboom and Nuweland, falling outside the Kasteelberg – Paardeberg area that also deserves investigation. Even the local corporate wineries must be hailed.

Viva Swartland!

How Kasteelberg got its name

The Gouda Book Club Commission for Colonial History in the Riebeek Valley, as commissioned The Wine Kollective, has released the final word on the early history of the Valley. It has been the result of extensive research and thousands of hours spent at the Cape Archives and The Hermon Hotel.

In the years before satellite imaging and when the world was still flat, a rumour existed that somewhere in Africa there was a city with golden streets on the banks of a lush river of gold. The river was Vigiti Magna and city was fabled to be called Monomotapa. To make travel more attractive, travel agents of the time included this river and city on their travel pamphlets as the star attraction of the journey. These cruises were especially popular with the Portuguese and Dutch. It is a well documented fact that after settling in at the Cape, Jan van Riebeeck sent Pieter Cruythoff on a trip to find the famed river of gold as his travel brochure indicated that it was north on the N7, right at Malmesbury towards Ceres.

With a glint in the eye, Corporal Pieter Cruythoff then coyly asked Surgeon Pieter van Meerhoff to accompany him on this exciting tour of the hinterland. Thereby setting a precedent that lasts to this day.

According to the archives they rode off into the morning dawn, ignoring the lure of the Paardeberg, Piketberg, and Paarlberg and headed almost straight to a yet unnamed mountain. They felt as if it was their mountain to name and called it Kasteelberg. (They did ponder the name "Brokeback Mountain", but it did not roll of the Dutch tongue so well.) On the western slope of the mountain they found a cosy spot next to a river that sprouted right out of the mountain. They unfolded a tartan picnic blanket under yet unnamed trees and called the trees "Cape Yellowwood". They marvelled at flowers without names, buck so tame they ate Lindt out of their palms, the mosquitoes and muggies that were absolutely everywhere. The remainder of the day was spent drinking Jan's first vintage and smoking Satin Leaf cigarettes. Camping was fun indeed. The wine provided some inspiration and they named another 14 mammals and another 28 plants. After even more of Jan's Kaapsche Wijn it was only apt that they then named the whole area, Riebeecks Kasteel. Somehow this was better than the Vigiti Magna and Monomotapa they set out to find.

Today on the western side of their beloved Kasteelberg, the same Riebeek's River still pours out of Kasteelberg towards the sea, unfortunately via Malmesbury.

And then .. Pieter van Meerhoff got over the corporal and married Kratoa, a Khoi queen. He was stabbed through the heart whilst pillaging the island of Madagascar and thus died of a broken heart.

Pieter Cruythoff just kept on moving and was reportedly last seen in a Green Point bar.

Source: PPC Environmental Report Phase 1

Anton Cecile Espost The Wine Kollective Wine Shop Riebeek Kasteel Swartland South Africa
Swartalnd Wine South Africa Riebeek Kasteel