Older vines give more character to the wine, says Rosa Kruger, a well-known South African viticulturist. She is behind a project called South Africa’s Old Vines Project, which aims at finding old vineyards, vineyards that have often been abandoned. The idea with the project is to give a new life to these old vines. A vine in South Africa is considered to be old at the age of 35. Only 3.4% of South Africa’s vineyard surface has reached this age or more. Just over half of it is Chenin blanc.
These old vineyards often belong to growers who are part of a cooperative. They must be persuaded to keep the old vines and not pull them up and to either make an “Old Vine” cuvee themselves that they can sell more expensive or to let a young and ambitious winemaker lease the vineyard and make his own wine from the grapes.
In the long run, Rosa Kruger hopes that all vines planted in South Africa will be virus-free vines and thus hopefully live longer and produce better wines for the future.
Read more about this interesting Old Vines project in South Africa here the-buyer.net
Travel: Travel to South Africa’s wine lands with on a wine tour with BKWine.