In Their Words
Elgin Vintners History & Location
Located just an hour east of Cape Town in the heart of the Elgin Valley, Elgin Vintners dates back to 1890 and is nestled between vineyard rows and fruit orchards, surrounded by the amphitheatre of the Kogelberg and Hottentots Holland mountain ranges.
We have a deep connection with and understanding of our vineyards and terroir. Meticulous care is taken of our vineyards which produce well-balanced grapes packed with flavour which show exceptional poise, finesse and elegance. Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Shiraz do particularly well in this later-ripening, cooler terroir.
In addition to an array of wine tasting options and delightful food pairings, the farm is a popular wedding venue and we also boast a 4 star boutique Victorian Country House. Situated less than 10 minutes drive from the agricultural town of Grabouw, we look forward to welcoming you!
Elgin Vintners Operating Hours
Wine Tasting: open Wed to Sun, 10am-4pm (bookings advised for 4 or more).
Tasting Room Light Meals: available Wed to Sun, 10am-4pm.
Special Events: please refer to website for latest food & art events.
Live Music: please contact the farm directly for details.
Yoga Events: please contact the farm directly for details.
All times, prices and facilities listed are subject to change. We recommend checking latest details directly with the farm and pre-booking experiences wherever possible, to avoid disappointment.
Elgin Vintners Wine Tasting
An array of wine tasting options as well as a 4 Wines & Pizza pairing are available. Our skilled wine tasting ambassadors will guide you through a tasting, while the panoramic vistas across the sprawling lawns envelope and welcome you. A selection of light meals including platters, pizzas and seasonal snacks are also on offer.
Wine Tasting Prices
The Estate offers 4 different wine tasting options including 4 Whites, 4 Reds, 3 wines from our Ridgelands Range or our 5 wine Elgin Vintners Experience. Prices range from R60pp. Bookings are advised for groups of 4 or more.
Elgin Vintners Restaurants
Although there is no full service restaurant at Elgin Vintners, snack platters and a small selection of woodfired pizzas are available to enjoy in the Tasting Room. Pizzas are priced from R120, a cheese platter from R120 for 2, a cheese and charcuterie platter R350 for 4, or a quiche of the day from R75.
Elgin Vintners Tours & Activities
Currently Elgin Vintners do not offer cellar tours, however throughout the year offer workshops and art tours. Should you have a specific request or would like to know more, please contact the Estate and they will be able to advise.
If you are seeking an idyllic venue to host your wedding or function, then Elgin Vintners is the perfect space for an intimate affair. The Ridgelands Manor House boasts luscious English-style gardens, which provide a magical fairytale setting with festive lighting draped amongst the ancient oak trees. Please make contact with the Estate for more information.
Elgin Vintners Accommodation
Escape into country living and feel like the lord and lady of the manor when you check in to our 4 star boutique guesthouse for a luxurious getaway. Built in 1927 to a Sir Herbert Baker design, our Country House has been restored to its Victorian glory, with all modern comforts. Accommodating up to 10 guests in 4 luxury suites, the Country House is child-friendly and gives guests the run of the property, including the swimming pool, tennis court and braai area.
Prices start from R1300 per night per suite, based on 2 sharing. All rates include breakfast and are based on low season (winter). Please check the website for up to date prices, specials and events: www.elginvintners.co.za/country-house/.
When Lucy Visited
I’d come across the name Elgin Vintners a few times in my wine travels, both in terms of their strong wine reputation and for the positivity surrounding their charming Country House. I was not disappointed – this is a little gem not to be missed!
So what makes Elgin Vintners stand out?
Elgin Vintners sits in the middle of the peaceful Elgin Valley, just an hours’ easy drive from Cape Town. Elgin is laidback with a capital L. I’d wanted to visit for a while, as not only is this region the birthplace of Appletiser (they love their apples here!) but it is fast becoming known throughout South Africa as one of THE most exciting places for quality winemaking and production. You get a sense here of a deep seated connection to the land, to expert fruit farming and abundant respect for produce, which obviously carries right through to the cellars: Elgin Vintners have won a treasure trove of awards for their many wines.
That aside, Elgin Vintners boasts a beautifully modern Tasting Room with floor to ceiling glass windows and several spots outside to soak up the tranquil rural setting. That would be probably be enough to draw you in however they then also have the wonderfully cosy and homely Country House, right next door. It’s the sort of place where if you’re staying overnight you get to know the staff by name, you can pour yourself a drink from the stylish honesty bar, sink into one of their plush sofas with a good book to the sound of a crackling fire. Bliss.
So What About The Farm Itself?
It’s relatively easy to reach Elgin Vintners, as it’s just 2-3kms off the main N2 road, which runs from Cape Town to Hermanus. It feels fairly rural but EV is well signposted, down Appletiser Road. The farm dates back to 1890 and was traditionally a fully-fledged fruit orchard. You can certainly envisage this as there are still many beautiful apple and pear trees lining the road as you drive in.
Once at the farm, you walk 10 paces to the left for the Tasting Room, or 10 paces to the right for the Country House. It’s in an idyllic setting and subject to there not being a special event on (like a wedding), you can ask the Tasting Room staff to give you a little tour of the Country House. As an English person this felt so much like home: an old homestead with large sash windows, flowing gardens and beautiful flowers (yes, perhaps the pool would be a stretch for England!). They also have several walking trails exploring the diversity of the area (Elgin is part of the ‘Cape Floral Kingdom’, one of the most biodiverse plant areas on the planet in terms of density and species).
The modern Tasting Room is relatively new for visitors, having been converted from an Art Studio (the Country House features lots of roving artworks from various artists). This standalone wooden structure blends seamlessly into the natural surroundings, with a pitched roof, abundant glass, brick and light wood with lots of light once inside. Whilst it’s not huge – perhaps 6 tables indoors including a couple of long tables seating up to 8 each – there is plenty of seating outside and on a warm day, they pull all the doors back ensuring a natural flow. Expect panoramic views of the gardens and nearby mountains, gentle music and a roaring fire on cold days.
On sunny days I was told that they often have bean bags outside for groups and families. Whilst they welcome kids both here and at the Country House, do note there are no dedicated facilities such as jungle gyms – it’s more that there is plenty of space for them to run around and tasty pizzas. Pre-COVID, Elgin Vintners were also hugely popular for festivals (and continually for weddings) and I can certainly see why, with the lovely lawns and friendly staff.
What About The Wine Tasting?
They have 4 wine tasting options available and quite a large range of affordable wines across a few ranges, so whether you prefer whites or reds you should be well looked after. I was hosted on this visit and chose the Elgin Vintners Experience which was R80 for 4. I chose their EV Sauvignon Blanc, EV Century (a Sauv Blanc/Semillon blend), Ridgeland Sandstone Sauvignon Blanc and EV Merlot – then they offered me a sip of their EV Syrah. Most of these also feature on their ‘pizza and wine pairing’ tasting which I definitely would have ordered – had I not ordered a whole wood fired pizza for myself (it was delicious, by the way).
It’s worth nothing that Elgin is a ‘cool climate’ wine region, with its climate influenced by its elevation and close proximity to multiple circling mountain ranges. This usually means the grapes ripen a little later and you are likely to get a bit more ‘minerality’ in the wines. Minerality broadly being characteristics such as flinty, saline or slightly salty textures or tastes. This may sound a little odd but it’s very subtle and actually delicate minerality is a key part of ‘terroir’ and very reflective of the parcels of land in which the vines are grown, so tasting wine from cool climate areas such as this is often really interesting and diverse.
I particularly loved the Elgin Vintners Sauvignon Blanc – very perfumed on the nose with waves of passion fruit, which followed through on the palate, with balanced acidity and a rich and lovely full mouth feel. Although their lighter Pinot Noir is more of the flagship style of this cooler region, I loved their heavier yet elegant Syrah, matured in French oak for 18 months with juicy tannins and ripe plums.
It’s worth nothing Elgin Vintners also offer a Fynbos Lite low alcohol canned wine selection, plus a few soft drinks, platters and wood-fired pizzas cooked to order. Expect an intimate and low key tasting, so nothing overly fancy but just good solid food, friendly service and lovely views. Definitely pre-book if you are a group larger than 4.
What’s Elgin Vintners Country House Like?
I didn’t stay overnight – but I wish I had! The Country House is the perfect blend of country charm mixed with warm, contemporary style. The sense of gracious hospitality and attention to detail was so apparent; I can see why they’re so popular for wedding parties!
With just 10 rooms, the ambience is totally relaxed – a home from home – yet with all the modern necessities to ensure a fab stay. The stylish communal lounge, bar and gorgeous veranda which spills on to the lawns is the focal point (and I can imagine many a convivial evening round the fire here), however there’s also a modern breakfast room, spacious pool, tennis court and now a pampering spa treatment room too. It’s the sort of place where you come, chill for a couple of days and leave a different (and better) person.
If you are planning on staying here, do take a close look at the room types as with it being an older building, rooms can vary in size and a little in style. The Syfret Honeymoon Suite was huge and had the most incredible bathroom – and when I looked online at prices didn’t seem a whole lot more expensive than the cheapest rooms, so definitely worth the upgrade. Note – there is no full service restaurant here, however there are a few options locally and the staff are really helpful.
An award-winning wine farm with its heart firmly rooted in hospitality, friendly Elgin Vintners makes for a very worthy visit for couples and small groups (or indeed larger groups, if there’s a festival on!). If you can, stay overnight and soak up that wonderful country vibe, go for nature walks, sip their delicious wines and meander through their pretty gardens before kicking back on the veranda or indulging in a spa treatment. You will not regret it!
You simply cannot visit here without having a nosy round the Country House. If coming for a wine tasting, ask for a little tour if it’s possible and ask to see the ‘family green room’ if you can. Talk about a funky 70’s trip down memory lane!