Muratie winery - great wine culture and tradition
Muratie is one of the oldest wineries in South Africa and is also a historical landmark. At this historic site, there are plenty of art treasures within an architecture from the founding period of this country. This very special winery is located on the foothills of the impressive Simonsberg and the vineyards around the old farmhouse are probably the best for red wines in the whole country.
Melck and Muratie - a South African success story
The Melck family has been associated with the Muratie estate since the 18th century. Today the doctor Dr. Rijk Melk is the successor of Ronnie Melk, who has made great contributions to the South African viticulture. Even today, tradition is highly valued. For the direct descendants of the legendary first owner Martin Melck, who emigrated from East Prussia to South Africa in the 18th century and was the founder of the Lutheran Church in Cape Town, quality and sustainability are the main focus.
Approximately 45 hectares of vineyards belong to the Muratie Estate in Knorhoek Valley in Stellenbosch. In addition to the first Pinot Noir vines in South Africa, the vineyards also played a major role in the Pinotage grape variety - because this is where the Pinot Noir grapes used for crossing with Cinsault come from. Furthermore, the grape varieties Shiraz, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Tinta Roriz and Cabernet Franc are cultivated.
Everything on the estate is laid-back, so the vines grow and thrive in peace and quiet to perfect maturity. The soil is natural, and geese and ducks wander through the vineyards to control pests. The grapes are picked exclusively by hand. A second selection of the grapes guarantees that only the best material is brought into the cellar. Consequently, the grapes are gently pressed in an air-cushion press and then fermented open or in stainless steel tanks in a controlled manner. After a few months in French oak barrels, the wines find their perfection - strong in character, of high quality and full of personality of the Muratie estates.
The wines and their namesake
The Muratie estate has been in existence since the 17th century and has hosted many illustrious characters in its history, whose names decorate the wines of Muratie:
- Laurens Campher: As the first owner of the Muratie Estate, it is of course a matter of course to dedicate a bottle of wine to the German soldier. But it was not only his knowledge of farming that earned the young lad a place in the annals of the estate, but also his love for a slave girl in Cape Town. He often took the arduous and mile-long way to meet her. Finally, in 1699, Campher took over the estate completely and was able to offer his beloved a place to live.
- Ansela van de Caab: Ansela was born directly into slavery and worked in the gardens of the Dutch East India Company. Together with the German soldier Laurens Campher she cherished the hope for a life in freedom. Together they had three children. A no less valuable gift was her manumission in 1695. Her patience had paid off - Campher took her to the Muratie estate, where they both lived carefree along with their children.
- Alberta Annemarie: When Alberta Annemarie and her father George Paul Canitz, an owner of the Muratie Estate, discovered the estate for the first time by chance during a horseback ride, she immediately fell in love with this beautiful spot. Canitz bought the estate and planted Pinot Noir vines - the first in South Africa. After his death, Alberta took over the estate and from then on was considered the first female winemaker in the country. Alberta did not change anything about the charming Muratie Estate and rode her horse until old age. At least until she said of herself that the horse would be too old.
- Amber: In addition to wine, the estate's portfolio also includes amber sweet wine. Allegedly George Paul Canitz named the dessert wine from the Muratie Estate after the fictional character Amber St. Clare from the novel Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor. Another thesis says that the hobby artist found his muse in a beautiful woman and dedicated this wine to her.
- Martin Melck: The Prussian mercenary was the first Melck on the Muratie vineyard in 1763, which he bought for his daughter Anna Chaterina. Martin Melck was Lutheran, but angered by the ban on living out his faith freely with other followers. So he built a schuilkerk, a hidden church for himself and other Lutherans in Cape Town.
- Ronnie Melck: After decades and centuries in the hands of numerous personalities, the estate was returned to the Melck family in 1987. Ronnie Melck, a direct descendant of Martin Melck, fulfilled his dream and brought the Muratie Winery into the present. Even today he still watches over the events, under the trees on the highest place on the farm.
- Ben Prins: The winegrower Ben Prins was a headstrong man who did not tolerate any mischief - especially not when making wine. Perfectionist and traditionalist Ben Prins knew the craft like no other and is still unforgotten on the Muratie canvas. In the minds of the people at Muratie he still wanders barefoot through the cellar and shows himself as a port wine in a glass.
- Isabella: The current owners of the Muratie Estate Rijk and Kim Melck run the winery with untamed passion and the constant knowledge of the farm's historic past. Nevertheless, the winery's path is pointing to a golden future, which can be tasted thanks to the care and dedication in Chardonnay wine. It goes without saying that their daughter Isabella stands with her name for easygoing joie de vivre.
More information about Muratie Estate
|Company Name:||Muratie Estate|
|City:||R44 Koelenhof, Stellenbosch|
|Contact & Web|
|Telephone:||+27 21 865 23306|
|Fax:||+27 21 865 2790|
|Company Owner:||Melck Family Trust|
|Managing Director:||Ronald Rijk Melck|