I” want to tell you straight out that South Africa, of all places, is one of the greatest sources for moderately priced Cabernet Sauvignon on the planet today”. Eric Asimov, New York Times
If you have not yet visited South Africa’s Western Cape, you might be surprised to learn that it shares the same Mediterranean climate as the finest wine regions in the world. You’ll find warm summers and cool winters with only an occasional frost. Unique to South Africa is millions of years of geological upheaval which has resulted in diverse distinctive soils and geography. Cape growers take advantage of every optimal site so you’ll see vineyards hugging valley floors, clambering over hills, climbing steep mountain slopes, and tucked beneath high peaks. Also, two oceans meet at this southern most tip of Africa, the Atlantic and the Indian Oceans, creating unique conditions to the land. There is no place on Earth like South Africa for growing the world’s favorite varietals. ‘South Africa has attained competitiveness with the world’s top wine-producing countries in terms of consistency, depth and range.
’Michael Franz, The Washington Post While wine critics and enthusiasts have applauded and embraced the rediscovery of the Cape’s impressive wines for several years, South Africa’s story is only now making its way across to North America. Wine has been part of the Cape’s culture since the 17th century when the Dutch East India Company made and sold wine in what is now modern day Cape Town. Wine made by an infamous vintner named Constantia became all the rage in the mid-19th century and South Africa enjoyed a brief but substantial export business during British rule. The 20th century shuttered South Africa’s export industry due to the Phylloxera epidemic and subsequently, worldwide economic boycotts in protest of Apartheid. By the late 1980s/early 1990s, fresh plantings were well-established and a new dawn awakened for wine lovers and wine makers within and without South Africa’s borders. South African wine is finally available worldwide. Now through Cape Ardor, Americans have access to the best wines South Africa has to offer.