In 2016, Johan and Anri bought the Platteklip farm to establish their new winemaking endeavour, Platteklip Vineyards. After years of making wine in some of South Africa’s leading appellations such as Elgin, Hemel-en-Aarde and the Swartland, they saw an opportunity in Piket-Bo-Berg to craft top-quality wine in a high altitude and cool climate.
The vision for Platteklip Vineyards is simple: to craft estate-driven wines while overseeing every step of the winemaking process. Thanks to the distinct environment, we work with a diverse range of vines: Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grow on the cooler southern slopes and Mediterranean cultivars such as Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsault and Chenin Blanc are grown on the warmer, northern side. To us, Platteklip is truly a site to behold.
Situated on the plateau of the Piketberg Mountain, Piket-Bo-Berg is found at approximately 800m above sea level. While traditionally the region is celebrated for producing some of the best fruit and flowers in the Western Cape, today winemaking is fast becoming the new frontier. At the forefront of this movement is visionary winemaker Johan Meyer. He has invested his time and effort into this unique terroir, believing it brings together the best of both worlds for winemaking:
“Firstly, the soil is remarkably diverse. To give you an idea, on the seven hectares that we planted in 2019, there were nine different soil profiles, including Ferricrete and Koffieklip. The vineyard also enjoys a much higher rainfall, at approximately 800ml - 950ml of rain per year (compared to the valley town that receives 450ml per year). The diurnal climate of hot days and cool nights are also ideal for grape growing. And as a big plus, the southern and northern-facing slopes provide an opportunity to grow everything from cool-climate varieties like Chardonnay and Pinot Noir to warm-climate grapes such as Grenache on the north,” shares Johan.
As a result, Platteklip Vineyards offers a curated showcase of five extraordinary wines: a Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, as well as a White Rhône Style and Red Rhône Style blend.
Johan first spotted the exceptional terroir of Piket-Bo-Berg when driving past for a surf. With his wife Anri, he bought land on top of Piketberg Mountain in 2016. They have since built a house, a cellar, a weather station and planted 14 hectares of organically grown vines. As the high altitude terroir here is unlike any other in the Swartland, Johan is working with SAWIS to set up a new ward: Piket-Bo-Berg Wine of Origin (meaning ‘the top of the Piket mountain’).
By focusing on sustainable farming in the vineyard and gentle winemaking in the cellar, we create site-specific, varietal-driven wines that best express one of the most exciting winemaking regions in South Africa. Watch this space - it’ll be worth it.