Oldenburg Vineyards is my 146th wine farm visit in South Africa. This winery is just 8kms from Stellenbosch on the way to Franschhoek in an area called Banghoek. The gravel road leading from the main road to the estate was not well-graded and so the 2km drive felt like a 10km drive but once we arrived it was like we arrived in an oasis!
You are welcomed at the door with all the COVID-19 protocols taking place before being seen to your table. Booking in advance is recommended.
So you may ask why this winery is a “classy affair”? Well that is because no expense is spared when it comes to wine. All bottles are sealed with corks, high quality textured paper is used for the wine labels, all the tasting glasses are Riedel and Zalto Denkart, vintage wines are decanted into glass decanters or they make use of a Coravin Inert wine gas preservation system. And the bonus… Amos (the brand ambassador that poured our wine) is WSET certified and is currently on level 3! Overall, it was an extremely sophisticated and professional wine tasting experience.
Inside the tasting room, the decor boasts beautiful views of the cape Winelands and the furniture is sleek and modern. If it’s a sunny day, you can sit outside and if it is rainy and cold, there is a lounge area with a fireplace.
I found myself a lovely spot outside and with views like this, who would blame me? Although it is winter here in South Africa, I was lucky to visit on the perfect day of sunshine and no wind.
Oldenburg Vineyards Wine Tasting
There are six different wine tasting options available starting at R95 per person up to R550 per person. What’s really great is that all the Oldenburg Vineyards tastings include a complimentary platter of cheese, crackers and olives. I must say, the complimentary platter really does compliment the flavours of the wine and it makes for a very enjoyable experience.
- RONDEKOP TASTING: Explore the wines of the Rondekop Series. R120 for one wine, R200 for two wines, R260 for three wines.
- OLDENBURG VINEYARDS TASTING: Taste the wines of the Oldenburg Vineyards Series. (Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Grenache Noir, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon) R140 per person.
- <CL° TASTING: The Coolest Tasting in Stellenbosch. Taste the <CL° White and <CL° Red blends R95 per person.
- 8 ELEMENTS TASTING: Taste a selection of wines across all the ranges: <CL°, Oldenburg Vineyards Series and Rondekop R250 per person.
- VERTICAL TASTING: Explore the development of a single cultivar over time, through sampling four vintages of a varietal. R300 per person.
- LIBRARY TASTING: Discover a selection of older vintages, presented to showcase the ageing potential and development of Oldenburg wines. R550 per person.
Oldenburg White Wines:
I started with the Chardonnay and Chenin of the Oldenburg Vineyards range, both 2020 vintages and as fresh as they come. The Oldenburg Vineyard tasting showcases a series of single cultivar wines as a true expression of the vineyards, solid and microclimate. The labels that you see below showcase a map of the estate. I must say, it was really great tasting a Chenin and Chardonnay side by side like this to experience the differences in varietal.
The Chenin grapes were picked from a single vineyard at 320m above sea level. The wine spent 11 months in old 300 L French oak barrels, concrete eggs and a new 2500 L Austrian oak Foudre. On the nose, peaches and cream, honey-melon, mangoes and pineapple. The mouth-feel is sublime, the acidity is zesty, and the fruit is incredibly balanced.
The Chardonnay grapes were picked from two blocks, planted on alluvial soil and weathered table mountain sandstone. The wine then spent 10 months in 228 L French oak barrels. On the nose, a flintiness is detectable among inviting aromas of peaches, honey melon, apricots and freshly baked brioche. The palate complements the aromas with exceptionally vibrant quince, papaya, ginger and loquat. Vibrant acidity and an exceptional mouth-feel give a long and satisfying finish.
Oldenburg Red Wines:
Onto the reds! Oldenburg Vineyards is quite popular for their quality Cabernet Franc. I was fortunate on the day to taste a 2015 and 2018 to compare and one can see the beautiful aging potential of this wine.
The Cabernet Franc grapes were harvested and sorted carefully by hand, and cold-soaked for 3 days before fermentation was initiated. Pump overs were performed up to three times daily. The wine was matured for 18 months in 300l French oak barrels (29% new oak.) Mustard seed, cayenne pepper and mulberries bring uniqueness to the nose. The palate has incredible finesse, with layers of rosemary, macerated cherries and a fine hint of wood smoke. Well-balanced tannins and a luscious acidity round off this distinctively beautiful wine.
The Syrah grapes were harvested and processed similarly to the Cab Franc and the wine was matured for 14 months in 300 L and 500 L French oak barrels (14% new oak). The nose is inviting with aromas of cloves, brambles, blackcurrant and mulberries. This Syrah shows a tannin structure that is both grippy, and smooth and silky. A delightful acidity provides the perfect backbone for the aromatics of this beautiful wine. Purple
lavender flowers, coffee beans and dark chocolate are found on the palate with a long finish of sour cherry.
Older Vintages & special wines
I was being spoilt because on this day I was able to taste some older vintages too. A Grenache Noir 2016 and a Chardonnay 2015.
Oldenburg Vineyards Platters
One cannot forget the beautiful way the cheese is presented. We thoroughly enjoyed snacking on the olives cheese and crackers whilst sipping on our glasses of wine.
Overall I would say this winery is suiteable for groups of families or friends who are looking for a sophisticated day out. Remember, there is a long and bumpy gravel road so best you prepare with the right vehicle. This winery can host from 1 to even 10 guests at a time and booking is definitely a MUST. Summer is the best months to visit however if it is a chilly day there is a nice room with fireplace. I would not recommend this winery for children. No pets.
I had a super time at Oldenburg Vineyards with special thanks to Amos (WSET level 3 student)!
Until the next winery visit…
Much wine love
Contact Oldenburg Vineyards
TASTING ROOM HOURS:
Monday – Saturday: 10:00-17:00
Public Holidays: 10:00-17:00
CLOSED: Sundays, Christmas Day, Day of Goodwill, New Year’s Day, Good Friday
BOOK A TASTING