Our People and Community

Our philosophy with the entire work force is to encourage the feeling of being a family.

Nikey van Zyl: Winemaker/Viticulturist
Nikey (28 years) graduated from Elsenberg in 2002. Having lived in Paarl for many years Nikey decided at an early age he wanted to work in the wine industry. Whilst at Elsenberg he took every opportunity to work at various wine estates. By the time he started at Haut Espoir in 2003 he had worked with Charles Hopkins of Graham Beck for three harvests in Franschhoek, a season at Avondale in Paarl, a year at Dry Creek in Sonoma Valley, a season at Chateau Angelus in St-Emilion and three months visiting wineries and vineyards in New Zealand.

Nikey is passionate about winemaking and was fortunate to be involved in the development of the winery, choosing the equipment and the making of the first wines at Haut Espoir.

Nikey’s time is taken up by winemaking, establishing the garden at his new house and whenever the time permits, he enjoys fishing and trips to the Kalahari.

Rob Armstrong: Management/Marketing
Rob (29 years) graduated from UCT in 2003 with a degree in Archaeology and Environmental Science. He worked at Bushmanskloof Wilderness Reserve before starting work at Haut Espoir. His passion for customer service and love of flora and fauna bring ideal skills to Haut Espoir as we start to build our brand and continue to work on the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative.

Our philosophy with the entire work force is to encourage the feeling of being a family. This includes assistance with housing, paying school fees, a private pension and education scheme managed by a trust, birthday presents for employee’s children, and medical assistance. Other initiatives have included part sponsoring of Nikey’s French and New Zealand wine experiences.

Haut Espoir