WINE BLENDED BY THE FORCES OF NATURE.
We do our utmost to let nature do the talking. Unpretentious quality is the result. The Wedderwill estate takes its name from the Old German, meaning the ‘will of the weather’. And few estates work so closely with Mother Nature. Situated on the Schapenberg, the farm’s south-facing vineyards yield to the passing winds, embrace the sun, and survive each turbulent storm. The result is wines of character and quality – to be savoured, whatever the weather.
Those who work at Wedderwill believe they have a responsibility to the land in their care. Wind, soil, rain, microbes, heat, worms, sunshine, fungi, air, plants – all work together to create spectacular wines. It makes sense, then, not to work against these natural processes by introducing damaging toxins, or unsustainable practices. The environment is the terroir.
About the winemaker
Nico Vermeulen was born in the Western Cape, schooled in the Orange Free State, and studies his craft in France. He has more than 30 year’s experience in the winemaking business, winning a host of Veritas Golds, Double Golds and Champion Estate Awards.
“New World wines are both a challenge and a reward.”
He began his career at the Ashton Winery in the early 70s, before studying winemaking at Elsenberg in Stellenbosch. The early 90s were spent in Pomerol and St. Emillion in France. Then, after a stint at L’Ormarins, Nico started both Savannah Wines in 1997, and Savannah Hills in 2000.
At about this time, he also began consulting for Wedderwill – resulting in the estate’s first vintages in 2004, a Bordeaux blend and a Shiraz.
Today, Nico’s pursuit of perfection continues.
Future forecast: sustainability
‘At Wedderwill, we aim to create wines that capture the unique qualities of our environment. Our approach to viticulture and winemaking is to intervene as little as possible with natural processes, allowing the wine to be truly expressive of the terroir.’
– Wolfgang von Loeper, General Manager
For more than a decade, Wedderwill has been implementing an ecologically-friendly farm management system. They are signatories to the BWI (Bio-diversity and Wine Initiative), and are one of just a handful of local estates to be declared ‘Champions in Conservation’. Biodiversity is the key, and large scale efforts have been made to clear alien vegetation and improve the health of the soil.
International expertise has also been sought to improve efficiencies in composting, mulching and the growing of cover crops. The result is less soil erosion, better use of water, and fewer herbicides. A carbon calculator helps to reduce farm wastage. They are already members of the IPW (Integrated Production of Wine), a voluntary industry body that is concerned with environmental sustainability, and positive human development.