On the slopes of the majestic Kasteelberg Mountain, surrounded by wheat fields, vineyards and olive groves, you will find the Mediterranean of Africa – the magical Riebeek Valley.
Just an hour drive from Cape Town, Riebeek Cellars is an excellent stop along the way while exploring the charming villages in the valley.
In 1661, the Dutch explorer, Pieter Cruythoff scouted out the Riebeek Valley. The single, majestic mountain stood out to him and he named it Kasteelberg (Castle Mountain) in honour of the Castle of Good Hope, which was Cape administrator, Jan van Riebeeck’s fortress. He also founded the towns of Riebeek Kasteel and Riebeek West at the foot of Kasteelberg. In 1688, the French Huguenots arrived and saw fit to continue the French wine-making tradition in the Cape. Thus, customs dating back 350 years ultimately inspired the establishment of Riebeek Cellars in 1941. The valley, steeped in tradition, is known for its warm, humble country hospitality, and Riebeek Cellars fits right in with their fine wines and tradition of uncomplicated simplicity.
The tradition follows through in their participation in the Integrated Production of Wine (IPW), a South African initiative that strives to lessen chemical intervention and improve waste management within the wine industry. They are also a member of the WWF’s Biodiversity in Wine Initiative (BWI) and are committed to safeguarding the remaining endemic renosterbos and following better farming practices to sustain the natural environment.
Riebeek Cellars sources grapes from the fertile Riebeek Valley and the slopes of the Kasteelberg Mountain where the climate is very similar to the Mediterranean. The land has been developed over the years and the best environment for each cultivar has been chosen, resulting in high-quality wines. The wet winters ensure a proper rest phase for the vines. The sunny, hot, dry summers with cooling westerly winds form part of the fantastic terroir. A balanced range of wines is produced, with particularly excellent Shiraz, Chardonnay and Chenin Blanc thanks to the unique soil profile.
Keep an eye on Riebeek Cellars’ news page to find out about upcoming events. The next exciting event is the annual Grape Stomping event which takes place on 27 February 2016 from 9 am to 3 pm. Form a team and have fun stomping grapes, enjoying wine, music, food and a waterslide for the kids.
Read our Riebeek Kasteel blog post to find out what else makes the town special.