History

The House of J.C. Le Roux is South Africa's leading house of sparkling wine dedicated exclusively to the making of fine sparkling wines. We are situated in the fertile Devon Valley near the historic town of Stellenbosch, in the premier wine-growing region of the Cape.

Sparkling wine (or champagne, as it is known in France) was first made three centuries ago, and since then, wherever it is enjoyed, its magical sparkle has put the world in a festive mood.

It was the Franciscan monk, Dom Perignon, who first made champagne and so delighted was he that he cried out exuberantly, "Today I tasted the stars!"
Even so, the sediment in the champagne, or sparkling wine, had clouded the liquid, spoiling the effect somewhat.

A century later, it was the ingenious Widow Cliquot who devised a way to eliminate the cloudiness. She had her servants drill holes in her dining room table and place the bottles of champagne in these, at an angle. The bottles were turned a little each day so that, after a period, the sediment collected in the necks and could be removed. Now the champagne was as clear as crystal, as we know it today. Although cellar craft and techniques have become sophisticated, this simple and somewhat primitive method, devised by the capable widow, still forms the basis of the renowned Méthode Champenoise, or Méthode Cap Classique, as it is known in South Africa.

During the time of religious persecution in France, a large number of French Huguenots made their way to the Cape of Good Hope to start a new life. No doubt, the fertile valleys and the Mediterranean climate reminded them of the homeland they had left behind. Their influence on life at the Cape proved to be decisive, as they brought with them their considerable skills and knowledge of viticulture. Among them was the prominent Huguenot, Jean le Roux, who left his home in Normandy to settle in the heart of the Stellenbosch area in 1704. He planted 8000 vines in total in the Stellenbosch district and continued the tradition of viticulture in Devon Valley.

Today, the House of J.C. Le Roux nestles on part of the historic farm, and it bears testimony to the contribution made to Devon Valley by this illustrious family.


JC Le Roux
+27.218658200