With love for the land
The Old Vine Project
Young and crisp, old and over? Not so in the wine business. In wine marketing, «Vieilles Vignes or Old Vines» are booming.
The Old Vine Project is a fascinating endeavor dedicated to the preservation and appreciation of historic vines and wine varieties. This project aims to bring back to life old grape varieties and wine styles that have not been grown or produced in South Africa for many years.
One of the most remarkable aspects of this project is the identification and rescue of old vineyards that have often been neglected or overgrown. These old vineyards harbor unique genetic diversity and historical heritage that is worth preserving. The grapes obtained from these old vineyards are then used to produce wines that revive the traditional styles and flavors of times past.
This initiative has gained recognition in South Africa and beyond, and demonstrates the importance of preserving cultural heritage and biodiversity in viticulture. It allows wine connoisseurs to discover unique wines with a rich history and gives winemakers the opportunity to experiment with old grape varieties and produce exciting new wines.
Old Vine is considered quality, has denser flavors because the vines root deeper to access water and nutrients. Thus, they survive more easily in hot climates where there is little to almost no rain.
The Old Vine grapes show less fruit, but reflect the soil and terroir on which they were grown.
«Old Vine» from South Africa
The global wine world has its eye on the Old Vine Project in South Africa. Because where elsewhere the focus is on harvest and yield, the so-called mass business, more and more wineries in South Africa are relying on old vines.
It began in 2003 in South Africa with the search for old vines older than 35 years. This is the minimum age of the vines. Meanwhile, there are about 3700 hectares of Old Vine vines and 10 vineyards that are even more than 100 years old. Almost 2000 hectares are planted with the most cultivated variety in South Africa, Chenin Blanc. These vines reflect the terroir and landscape, and are a tribute to the winemaker’s love of the land. The Certified Hertitage Vinyards label ensures the vineyard’s planting date. Numerous award-winning wines come from certified wineries all wine styles, regions and varieties.