Wine

Wine grapes are grown on a much smaller scale to other fruit on the farm, but have in recent times also garnered a significant reputation for Koelfontein which is also one of the few farms in the Ceres district to grow wine grapes and produce a wine range.

In the early days of the farm, wine grapes were grown for distilling into brandy (or stookwyn), initially for the family’s private consumption and medicinal purposes, but eventually also distilled on a commercial scale

For many years Francois Conradie supplied his Columbar grapes to a co-operative winery in Wolseley. The wines made from those grapes were doing so well that the winemaker eventually convinced him to plant some Chardonnay when the cultivar entered the country in the late Eighties. The maiden vintage was a great success, earning a Veritas Double-Gold medal, which resulted in Ceres becoming a Wine of Origin Region. Following this success, other cultivars were also planted on Koelfontein – Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.

Handri and his brother Zulch launched the Koelfontein wine label in 2002 and our wines have continued to collect accolades, from the Shiraz 2004 earning a Veritas Double-Gold medal as well as being runner up in the 2006 Wine Magazine Shiraz Challenge to the Chardonnay 2011 being awarded a Gran d’Or (double gold) at the Michelangelo International Wine Awards in 2013.

Wine Tasting

The old wine cellar, with the copper brandy still alongside it, and water mill were restored in the early 2000’s by Francois Conradie. But the natural heritage of Koelfontein is as important to those who live here as is the preservation of historical family relics. In keeping with the farm’s ethos of farming in partnership with nature, Koelfontein’s wines are part of the Biodiversity & Wine Initiative, because about two-thirds of the farm’s 950 hectares extends up into the mountains around the Gydo Pass. These huge tracts of land are rich in virgin indigenous Fynbos, including the rare and threatened Lowland Fynbos.

The restored wine cellar, known as Die Kelder, now houses wine tasting for visitors to Koelfontein and serves as a glimpse into the farm’s history. Die Kelder was the first permanent dwelling on Koelfontein and was home to the first two generations of Conradies. Once the family moved to a newer, larger house in the late 1800’s this building was converted into a wine cellar and blacksmith’s forge. Today the family tradition of brandy distilling is still honoured on Koelfontein every year when witblits is distilled from Hanepoort wine made here.

Die Kelder is open weekdays from 11am to 4pm and Saturdays from 10am to 1pm, or by arrangement – please refer to the Find Us page for our contact details and we’ll happily arrange a tasting for you.

Awards and accolades for koelfontein wines

Chardonnay 2014

Vitis Vinifera Award 2016 Trophy
Platters 2017 4 Strars
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2016 Bronze Medal
Veritas Wine Awards 2016 Bronze Medal

Shiraz 2012

Terroir Wine Awards 2016 Top Shiraz
Vitis Vinifera Awards 2016 Gold Medal
Veritas 2016 Silver Medal
Old Mutual Thropy Wine Show 2016 Bronze Medal

Shiraz 2011

Vitis Vinifera Awards 2015 Gold Medal
Michelangelo Wine Awards 2015 Silver Medal
Platters 2015 3½ Stars
Veritas 2014 Silver Medal
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2014 Bronze Medal

Chardonnay 2013

Vitis Vinifera Awards 2015 Gold Medal
Platters 2015 4½ Stars

Shiraz 2010

Michelangelo International Wine Awards Gold Medal
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2014 Bronze Medal
Veritas Bronze Medal
Platters 4 Star Rating

Chardonnay 2012

Veritas Silver Medal
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2014 Bronze Medal
Platters 4½ Star Rating

Chardonnay 2011

Michelangelo International Wine Awards 2013 Gran d’or
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2013 Bronze Medal
Vitis Vinifera Awards 2013 Trophy
Platter 4 ½ Stars

Chardonnay 2010

Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2012 Silver Medal
Platter 4-Star rating

Shiraz 2009

Vitis Vinifera Awards 2013 Gold Medal
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2012 Silver Medal
Veritas Silver Medal 2012
Platter 4-Star rating
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2012 Silver Medal

Shiraz 2008

Vitis Vinifera Awards 2013 Double Gold Medal
Veritas Silver Medal 2012
Platter 3½-Star rating