About Richard Kershaw

Founder and Winemaker of Richard Kershaw Wines. Born and raised in the UK, Richard enjoyed a successful career as a chef before finding wine. After travelling extensively, he arrived in South Africa in 1999 and by 2009 was Group Winemaker of Mulderbosch and Kanu.

One of only 10 Masters of Wine who actively make their own wines, he is pursuing his dream in Elgin in the Overberg region of the Western Cape. He focuses on cool climate, site-specific, clonally selected wines.

When not in the vineyard or cellar, he is much in demand for wine show judging. He also lectures for the WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) in South Africa, and share the breadth of his knowledge with students and consumers via talks, tastings and blogs.

His first two vintages (2012 & 2013) of his Kershaw Elgin Chardonnay, both received 5 stars in the Platter’s Wine Guide with the 2012 Kershaw Elgin Chardonnay being selected as one of the ‘Top 10 Chardonnays in the World outside Burgundy’ by Decanter. Made from Dijon clones, the Kershaw Elgin Chardonnays are Burgundian and elegant in style.

His first vintage (2012) of Kershaw Elgin Syrah has received international recognition, in particular being highly rated by Jancis Robinson. Northern Rhône in style, this wine is not typical of the usual South African warmer region Shiraz offerings.

History of Kershaw Wines

Richard Kershaw Wines was established in January 2012 to create clonally selected, site-specific, cool climate wines in the Elgin Valley, South Africa’s coolest wine region.

Focusing on apposite noble grapes, i.e. ones with the ability to produce world-class examples, our Kershaw Elgin Chardonnay and Syrah are made by South Africa’s only winemaking Master of Wine, Richard Kershaw.

The Elgin Valley benefits from higher altitude, ocean proximity, specific cloud cover sequencing, high cold units and a large diurnal range, similar to Southern Burgundy and the Northern Rhône, which enables the germane grapes, Chardonnay and Syrah, to show a sense of place.

The Kershaw Elgin Chardonnay makes use of the lower-yielding Dijon clones, namely 76, 95 & 96 (developed at the University of Burgundy in Dijon, France), offering a restrained, mineral style focused on elegance with a white, fruit character, some oatmeal, and complexity gained from percipient wood.

The Kershaw Elgin Syrah makes use of local clones 9c and 22 giving subtlety and precision built on fine tannins that educe harmony, freshness and flavours of black fruit, iodine, medicinal notes and black pepper.

Each wine is made from 3-4 small parcels on terroir-specific plots with particular soils types. They are all handpicked into small lugs and vinified in Elgin travelling no more than 10-15 minutes between vineyard and cellar, avoiding unnecessary crushing and premature juice oxidation. In the cellar, they are handled minimally using a gravity-fed system that avoids pumping and no products are added to the wine.

Richard Kershaw Wines