Things To Do in Somerset WestHeron Ridge Wine Farm
Where? Winery Road, Somerset West, Helderberg, Western Cape
When? By appointment only
How? Call +27 (0)21 842-2501
How much? Price on request
Peter “Orps” and Jane Orpen have always shared a love of wine and after joining a wine club, started their own one. With very little knowledge of farming, they moved to Kleinplaas in Winery Road in 1997. 40 year old bush vines of Chenin and Cinsaut were scattered over the farm. Orps learnt to spray, prune and harvest.
In 1999, they replaced old vines with Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. Paul Wallace joined their team as a consultant in viticulture. Mentor and friend, Kevin Arnold of Waterford supervised the first barrel. Grapes were picked on the farm and taken to Waterford to de-stem and ferment before being hand pressed and matured in French and American barrels. Orps’ passion for winemaking grew and he was rewarded with a 4 star wine. 2002 saw the construction of a small cellar to make their Heron Ridge Shiraz and a year later came 24 barrels of the first home vintage.
After Orps passed away, his daughter Pippa has inherited his passion. All Heron Ridge wines are unfiltered, hand bottle and hand labelled. Only 30 tons of grapes are harvest each year which yields 1000 cases annually. Make sure you sample some of this fine wine.