Our Secret

Ideal growing conditions, specialized farming

Establishing vineyards involved removing or crushing thousands of tons of boulders. Never daunted, the Jordaans undertook the gigantic task producing Theuniskraal's characteristic cool, stony, sandy-loam soils with excellent drainage and aeration - providing ideal growing conditions, especially for Riesling. Moveable trellising wires, careful canopy management and modern viticultural practices - plus the cooling shadows cast by surrounding mountains - ensure slow ripening of the grapes.

The farm Theuniskraal is situated about 7km north of the village of Tulbagh, tucked into the Winterhoek Valley which is formed by the Witzenberg Mountains to the east, the Obiqua range to the west and the Winterhoek Mountains to the north.

These mountains form important watersheds and are the main sources of the three most significant rivers in the Western Cape, the Berg, Breede and Oliphants. The second highest peaks in the Western Cape are also found in these mountains. Situated 2 050m above sea level, they are regularly snow-clad in winter, giving the vines the opportunity to go into proper dormancy, essential for late-budding varietals such as Cape Riesling and Chardonnay. Intense cold leads to more even budding in spring, which beneficially impacts on grape quality.

Currently, there are 140 hectares under vine, planted to ten varietals. All vineyards are trellised and receive supplementary irrigation. The most significant varietals on the farm are Cape Riesling, Chardonnay and Semillon.

Theuniskraal Estate