Our Winemakers

Meet our winemakers

Martin Moore - Meet Our Cellar Master 
Known for his charismatic personality and storytelling, cellar master Martin Moore is as much part of the Durbanville Hills Winery as the contours of the hills surrounding the cellar.

He joined Durbanville Hills in 1998 while the cellar was still under construction and since then has played a pivotal role in shaping the wines produced here.

He firmly believes the hills determine which wines are released under the Durbanville Hills label, underscoring his winemaking philosophy that wines are made in the vineyards. The result is a range of wines that perfectly captures the area’s varied and unique terroir.

“It is easy to produce wines here,” he says. “Everything is in our favour - great soil, enough rain, hills and slopes facing the right way making them suitable to a variety of cultivars, and a wonderfully cool climate that allows the grapes to ripen slowly thus capturing a range of flavours.”

Martin was attracted to winemaking whilst growing up in Worcester, spending many a weekend on a farm - attentively watching vineyards coming into production and wine being produced at a small winery. But he says that during his army days he drank everything but wine!

He enjoys eating and cooking and has had the privilege of cooking with a number of chefs over the years. He says his most serious cooking was prompted by hunger as a student. At university he and his roommate would miss supper due to rugby practice, and not in the mood for cold left-overs, they locked themselves in their room and opened a bottle of wine (they had a letter from their lecturer to say it was part of their winemaking curriculum, in case they were caught) and cooked on a two-plate stove he still owns. His favourite dish was a chicken and tomato casserole. When it comes to food and wine pairing it’s more important for Martin to match the people to the wine than to the food. “I like to take people’s wine preferences into account so that I don’t force them to drink a varietal they don’t enjoy.”

Martin studied viticulture and wine-making at university and expanded his knowledge of white wines under the careful tutorage of KWV’s Willie Hacker. After a spell at Robertson and the world of sweet wines and brandy, he returned to KWV’s head office where he focused on perfecting what lies at the core of every well-balanced wine - the art of blending.

At the age of 27 he was appointed senior cellar master in charge of the KWV’s white, red, fortified and sherry cellars, taking over from Willie on his retirement. It was also Willie who taught him the importance of wine hygiene, and together they did their fair share of cleaning the cellars, shoulder to shoulder with the rest of the work force, on Friday afternoons.
Thereafter Martin produced quality wines at Groot Constantia. The volumes produced were in sharp contrast with the 1,4 million liters he was accustomed to at the KWV.

When Martin is not travelling to all corners of the globe to share the Durbanville Hills range of wines or blending wines in the cellar, you will find him cooking creative dishes at home, always with a glass of Durbanville Hills nearby, or next to a campfire in the Bushveld.

MORE ABOUT OUR UNIQUE WINERY.

Kobus Gerber - Meet Our White Winemaker
“I am a winemaker who believes good wine is made in the vineyard with minimal human intervention. I sincerely believe South Africa offers high quality wines to palates around the globe. My goal is to make an iconic South African white wine.”

For white-wine maker Kobus Gerber iconic wines present more than just quality. To him it is the conversation such a wine ignites long before its even been made with everyone waiting in anticipation of the final product. Such a wine should tell a story of the unique properties of the vineyard, the handling of the grapes in the cellar and the special touch of the winemaker when crafting the final blend. And he firmly believes that the location of Durbanville Hills’ vineyards with their close proximity to Table Bay, the endless variety of slopes, hills and soil types, is the canvas from which he can produce such a wine.

Kobus is an exceptionally talented winemaker who has won numerous trophies, gold and double gold medals at local and international wine competitions. He grew up in Stellenbosch and developed an early passion for winemaking during many weekends spent with friends on their parents’ wine farms. After two years of compulsory military training, he worked as an assistant-winemaker on an estate outside Stellenbosch. Kobus joined Die Bergkelder team in 1990 and in 2002 took over the white wine production and management of barrel maturation for the range of Fleur du Cap wines and as group winemaker included the internationally award-wining range of Lomond wines in his portfolio. During his tenure Kobus spent two seasons in France, extending his winemaking knowledge and technical abilities. He has served as a tasting panel member on the National Young Wine Show as well as the Wine and Spirits Board, and is a member of the Chenin Blanc Association and the Sauvignon Blanc Interest Group.

At Durbanville Hills he aims to capture the essence of the area’s unique location and to create distinguished wines that showcase their exceptional origin. Although he says he can work magic in the cellar he believes in handling grapes gently to preserve the concentrated, natural flavours that give greater dimension to the wine.

Kobus is an avid cyclist and road-runner and enjoys spending his free time in nature. He loves cooking and rates potjiekos as one of his favourite dishes to prepare for his family and friends and his fridge is never without a couple of bottles of Methodé Cape Classique, white wines and a selection of exotic cheeses. And although he finds pleasure in trying new and interesting styles and blends, you will most often than not find him enjoying a glass of Sauvignon Blanc or Shiraz.

MORE ABOUT OUR MAGICAL WHITE WINES.

Wilhelm Coetzee - Meet our Red Winemaker
Wilhelm Coetzee joined Durbanville Hills as red wine maker in 2008 and his passion and talent for winemaking are evident in the awards his wines have since garnered at international competitions.

Before joining Durbanville Hills, he had been cellarmaster and winemaker at Flagstone Winery for eight years. There, he played a pivotal role in building Flagstone’s reputation locally and abroad, with the winery consistently earning acclaim at major competitions.

Wilhelm studied analytical chemistry at the Cape Technikon and then joined Denel as analytical chemist. During this time, his passion for wine grew until he decided to get a formal qualification in the industry - a BSc in viticulture and oenology from the University of Stellenbosch. Wilhelm believes in being actively involved in the vineyards throughout the growing and ripening season and is very focused on detail in the cellar, stressing that a winemaker can never check on the wines too often during vinification.

When not in the vineyard, Wilhelm enjoys cooking flavourful meals matched with exceptional wines, such as succulent Karoo leg of lamb served with a velvety Cabernet Sauvignon. A lover of nature, he also likes taking long walks and gardening.

MORE ABOUT OUR EXQUISITE REDS.

Durbanville Hills Cellar
+27.215581300