Pulpit Rock, Cape Tranquility in South Africa is owned and managed by the Brinks family who can trace their farming roots in the Riebeek Valley through many generations. The dream had been lingering in the minds on the Brink family for many decades; it was not until 2003 that Ernst Brinks decided it was time the family’s great dream should materialise.
Ernst’s sons, Haumann and Van Del Byl have joined him and are now an integral part of the winery. Koos van der Merwe, originally from Wellington, is the team’s viticulturist. Ernst’s wife, Louisa, as well as Carin and Hesta (Van de Byl and Haumann’s wife, respectively) are all involved. The winery harvested its first grapes in 2004 and opened its doors to the public the following spring.
The state of the art Pulpit Rock Winery is situated on the foothills of the Kasteelberg Mountain – the “pulpit” rock is a well-known piece of the craggy background of these lands. The climate and soil in this part of the Swartland region are particularly good for producing fruit packed wines. The soil consists mainly of shale and weathered sandstone. The winters in the Swartland are cold and wet followed by warm dry summer months resulting in grapes of outstanding quality.
The Pulpit Rock grapes are chosen meticulously and harvested fully ripe to achieve optimum quality, including good structure and prominent fruit. Grapes are taken from the two farms owned by the Brink family, both for more than 50 years: De Gift and Panorama – together there is about 450 hectares of vines. They grow Pinotage, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Mouverde, and Petit Verdot – since 2008 they have crushed some 500 – 600t of grapes each year. There are two vast barrel maturation cellars including a 1,000 ton overall production capacity.
A combination of the latest equipment and traditional techniques are used to create world class wines. Pulpit Rock is rightly renowned for its wines and has won awards around the world.