Background


The Stellenryck collection of rare wines is intended for connoisseurs with discerning palates, who truly have an appreciation of the very finest. That is why it is made from the worlds noblest grape varieties, and only in exceptional vintage years.

The history of the wine reserved for the Stellenryck Collection starts years before it is made, when The Bergkelder, in its quest for excellence, selects choice plant material of noble varieties to be established in unirrigated vineyards in the Coastal Region of the Cape of Good Hope. These vineyards, situated in the prime winegrowing areas of the Western Cape, possess the soils and climatic conditions which suit each of these classic cultivars and contribute to their individuality.

Close co-operation between the grape growers and The Bergkelders viticulturist ensures that the practices such as pruning, trellising, canopy management and disease and pest control are closely monitored until harvesting, ensuring restricted yields and therefore concentrated, flavourful wines. A further selection of vineyards occurs during the ripening stage when the quality history of each vineyard block is checked and the ripening grapes are continually tested - by means of chemical analysis as well as sensory evaluation - to determine which blocks show most promise of developing the desired quality. After harvesting, the yields from each selected vineyard are vinified separately. The wines are then stringently tasted and tested by the Head Cellarmaster of The Bergkelder, Dr Pierre Marais. Only those adjudged by him to be the finest are chosen for the wines of the Stellenryck Collection.

These connoisseurs wines are cellared, in new barriques of French oak and then in the bottle, under optimum conditions in The Bergkelders underground maturation cellar, where temperature and humidity are controlled. Every bottle of these rare wines is individually registered in The Bergkelder - the number appears on the neck label - and reflects the meticulous care and love with which these wines are made.

Dr Pierre Maraiss position as Head Cellarmaster of The Bergkelder is the culmination of a long and distinguished career in the world of South African wine. He originally obtained his doctorate in Agriculture from the University of Stellenbosch and has at various times been viticultural researcher, senior wine technologist at The Bergkelder and Chairman of the South African Wine and Spirit Board.

As Head Cellarmaster personally responsible for the Stellenryck collection, Dr Marais releases this exclusive collection of wines only when it can challenge the finest in the world. Made from premium grape varieties, grown under strict supervision in the vineyard, vinified with care in The Bergkelder and finally nurtured with dedication in the cold cellar - the Stellenryck Collection reflects a firm commitment to excellence in wine making.

Stellenryck
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