Oldenburg Vineyards is located in the Banghoek Valley (pronounced “bun hook” and meaning "scary corner" due to leopards roaming around in times past) about 8 km from Stellenbosch.

1950’s – 1993

My family first came to the valley in the early 1950's soon after arriving from India. My grandmother, Dorothy, who lived on the farm until passing away in 2009, remembered very fondly the first time she saw the valley and how she was struck by the sheer beauty of it. She soon met Helmut Hohman, who recently arrived from Germany, and settled down at Ivy Knowe, which is now part of the Oldenburg estate.

At the time the main body of Oldenburg was called Rondekop, named due to the very distinctive "Round Hill" that forms the centrepiece of our vineyards. Helmut was fortunate to be able to buy Rondekop when it was put up for auction in 1955 on a cold and windy Cape winters night, (many of the potential buyers failed to show due to the miserable weather!). He had spent the previous few years in court with the owners of Rondekop over water rights and in particular the diameter of the pipe used to fill the swimming pool, a dispute that had gone to the Supreme Court of South Africa! After buying the property Helmut thus found the name Rondekop a painful reminder of his dispute and he decided to rename the farm Oldenburg in memory of his German roots in the town of Oldenburg.

The farm was originally a fruit farm with vineyards being planted in the 1960's, which were amongst the first in Banghoek. A combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and later some Sauvignon Blanc all performed well on the round hill, which is still known as Rondekop. For many years the grapes were sold to Stellenbosch Farmers Winery who believed the grapes to be of excellent quality.

1993 - 2007

In 1993 upon the death of Helmut the estate was put into a trust. Unfortunately this situation led to a decade where the vineyards declined. In 2003 I decided that the time had come to bring the Oldenburg vineyards back to life. I was born on an adjacent property but left a turbulent South Africa around 1967. I would return to the Cape almost every year for Christmas and have always found the beauty of the valley captivating. To my mind the chance of capturing Oldenburg's enormous potential by producing high quality wines seemed like an opportunity too good to miss.

With the vineyards in a relatively parlous state the decision was made to completely replant. This created the opportunity to leverage our terroir by adopting modern viticulture practices.

2007 - present

In 2007 we produced our maiden vintages. Despite being young, we believe the vineyards really managed to show their potential by producing some exciting wines. Our first Syrah was named "Joshua" after my son as he celebrated his sixth birthday on our first ever harvest day. Our maiden Cabernet Franc was called "Les Quatre Enfants" as a celebration of my four children.

We believe that Oldenburg is a place of extraordinary peace and beauty. A common reaction by most arriving here for the first time is one of awe followed by the words, "I never knew such a stunning place existed". With wines now in production we hope to be able to allow many more to discover the place that we believe is the "Gem of Stellenbosch"

Adrian Vanderspuy

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Certifications: WIETA IPW