Welcome to the Western Cape Wineries - a kiwi's opinion blog

I originally set up this blog to help foreigners have an enjoyable experience when visiting the western cape wineries in South Africa.

I realised that it is very difficult for a tourist to choose where to go and which wineries to visit, when you have 600+ wine producers to choose from.

When I first moved to SA December 2010, my palate struggled to adjust to SA wine, b
ut after living here for a while and after visiting over 100+ wine estates, I have found many wines which I really like and can highly recommend.

Admittingly, when you come from another country it is hard not to compare the wine in SA to what you are used to back home. However, once you realise they are not the same (they have their own characteristics due to the different soil, climate etc) and appreciate their wines for being SA wines, it will improve your opinion and experience of the wines immediately.

If you are staying in SA for a while, don't dispair, your palate will change, and you will soon find yourself liking SA wine over your home countries wine!!

I hope my blog will help wine lovers have an enjoyable wine experience while in SA.

Please note: I am not a wine connoisseur. The comments I write about the wine is mostly for my own benefit of having them on record.

Sunday, 23 August 2015


I contacted the winery an hour in advance to let them know I was wanting to come for a tasting. They were very accommodating and happy for me to come through.

I was greeted by Jessica in the tasting room, and was led to a map on the wall. She explained that the farm is 12 hectares, 10 of which vines have been planted and two are planted with olive trees. When the farm was purchased in 2000, extensive soil tests were done and it was decided that Syrah would be the ideal grape here. 8 of the 10 hectares have been planted with Syrah, 1 hectare is for Viognier and another hectare for Mourvedre.

The wine farm is called Kleinood which is an Afrikaans word meaning small and precious. The wine however is called Tamboerskloof which I found interesting. I asked Jessica why the wine was called this and she explained that the owners used to live in the Tamboerskloof area in Cape Town for 25 years and with their fondness and memories from this area they decided to name their wine Tamboerskloof. Tamboerskloof means the valley of the drums.

We then sat down at the long table in the tasting room and tasted three wines. Here are my notes on the wines:

Tamboerskloof Rose is 100% Syrah (R76 a bottle). They use the free run juice of this grape to make the rose. Unlike many wineries, Kleinood doesn't use the leftover grape skins to make red wine. These grapes are designated for Rose. The wine was lovely, the aromatics were medim-pronounced in intensity. It had strawberries/red berrries on the nose, fresh, citrus and lime flavours. This wine was named after the owners daughter, Katharien.

Next we tasted the Tamboerskloof Viognier (R108 a bottle). This consists of 90% Viognier and 10% Roussanne.  They mature this wine in 300L and 500L old french oak barrels. This wine had a pronounced nose with fruit and spice. It was delicate, soft, light on the palate, with marmelade and spice on the finish. It needs to breathe and open up to get the full impact of body and flavour on the mid palate. Ideally you wouldn't want to serve this wine too cold either.

Tamboerskloof Syrah 2011 has 5% Mourvedre and 1% Viognier (R145 a bottle). Spent 20 months in barrel, 10-15% new oak. This had a deep ruby colour, was shy on the nose, smooth, savoury on palate, rich flavour, a little spicy, and a lovely mouth-feel. It was a very elegant wine.

The wines are all good quality and I feel very good value for the price.

On my way out, I admired the beautiful grounds just outside the tasting room. I wonder if they do tastings outside? It is very pretty!

A few weeks after this tasting, I dined at Il Leone restaurant with some friends and I chose a bottle of the Tamboerskloof Syrah to enjoy with our dinner. It was beautiful and all of us enjoyed the wine! I can highly recommend visiting this winery, and ordering a bottle at a restaurant. I truly feel you can't go wrong with any of their wines!

At the winery they also sell olive oil, which is made from their own olive trees. They sell this for R93 a bottle. With the wine tasting you get to try this also.