South African brandy is made to the highest production requirements. The process of making brandy excellence is a hand crafted and meticulous process that results in award winning pot still brandies with complex multi-layered aroma profiles. Take your time with our brandies and experience excellence. Today, South African brandy is acknowledged to be the world’s finest. Comprehensive legislation and a proud tradition ensure that our brandy is of the highest quality. The title of Worldwide Best Brandy at the International Wine and Spirits competition has been awarded to a South African brandy 15 times in the past 20 years
The first brandy in South Africa was distilled aboard the Dutch ship de Pijl, anchored in Table Bay harbour in 1672. The assistant cook succeeded in transforming two leaguers (1164 litres) of Cape wine into “three ankers (126 litres) of delicious brandy. The word brandy (brandywine) is derived from the Dutch word “brandewijn”, meaning burnt or distilled wine. The Dutch used distillation as a method of preserving wine aboard their ships. Indeed, a tot of brandy was offered to the first man on board to sight land, leading to calls of “Land Ahoy” many days before the vessels docked.
The Brandy tour takes you through the premier brandy-producing region of Stellenbosch and Franschoek. Apart from brandy, you can expect scenery that will take your breath away, lush green valleys, rugged mountains and historical buildings. You will enjoy and educational experience to how brandy is made, brandy tastings at three top distillery’s that has been awarded internationally for its quality. Enjoy walks in the historic towns of Stellenbosch and Franschoek that will take you back to history with the aim to acquit yourself with the arrival of different European cultures that have since integrated with locals and historical buildings.
Places of Interest
Van Ryn’s Distillery is situated in Vlottenberg , a mere 30-minutes drive from Cape Town International airport and 45 minutes if you’re driving from the Southern Suburbs. The story of Van Ryn’s date back to 1845 pioneer Jan Van Ryn’s. He earned the distillery’s first international award in 1884. The Distillery in Van Ryn’s Road was erected in 1905 using rocks from Eerste River. You can still catch a glimse of the original rocks from the tasting room. You can also see the 200-year old Alambic Cognac Pot in the tasting room.
With old staves feeling the fire, the Alambic Cognac Pot can still produce 300 liters of brandy during Winter. Throughout the evolution of the distillery, the brandy making methods and techniques remains authentic to date. Van Ryn’s Distillery owns a cooperage which is one of the largest in the Southern Hemisphere.
Stellenbosch is a university town in South Africa’s Western Cape province. It’s surrounded by the vineyards of the Cape Winelands and the mountainous nature reserves of Jonkershoek and Simonsberg. The town’s oak-shaded streets are lined with cafes, boutiques and art galleries. Cape Dutch architecture gives a sense of South Africa’s Dutch colonial history, as do the Village Museum’s period houses and gardens.
Nestled on the slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain, equidistant to the cosy Winelands towns of Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Paarl, Backsberg Estate Cellars maintains 80 hectares under vine and produces a selection of tiered wine and brandy offerings from the region. As a winery of over 100 years, Backsberg’s philosophy remains to provide pleasure and enjoyment to a broad range of wine lovers by producing wines with not only structure and finesse, but also with a high level of drinkability.
Franschhoek is a town in South Africa’s Western Cape with centuries-old vineyards and Cape Dutch architecture. Trails wind through flowers and wildlife at Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve to views over Franschhoek Valley. The Huguenot Memorial Museum and neighboring monument honor the area’s French settlers, who arrived in the 17th and 18th centuries. Franschhoek Motor Museum displays vintage cars amid mountain farmland.
KWV is a leading South African wine and spirits producer with a distinguished heritage. KWV is celebrated around the globe for its product innovation and exceptional brands, which include Roodeberg, The Mentors, KWV Brandy, Laborie, Cathedral Cellar and Classic Collection. Today South Africa is a global player in the world of wine, with KWV a respected company that leads through innovation and quality. With its many award-winning wines, spirits and liqueurs, KWV honours its original objective of showcasing the quality of South Africa’s wine products to the world.