Behind the Wine

  • The Vineyard
  • The Cellar
  • Bottling & Logistics
  • Laboratory
  • Sustainable Trading
  • Breedekloof

Grapes from the valley of the slow-ripening vines

It’s a land we love, and even more importantly, it’s a landscape we intimately understand thanks knowledge pass through generation. We have learnt which combination of cultivars, soil types and areas on the farm lends our wines the complexity and personality (styles) for which they’re celebrated – Kobus Deetlefs

The Deetlefs vineyards are established in the Western Cape at the foot of the Du Toitskloof Mountain range in the Breedekloof-area.It is these magnificent mountains that provide the early shadow formations and long cooling period at night. The vineyards benefit from the unique terroir on the banks of the Smalblaar River that forms the one border. Ideal conditions for enhancing the delicate and complex flavours in the grapes.

The special “pocket” where Deetlefs Estate is situated contributes to our specific wine styles. Heat units are significantly lower than in some coastal regions, which ensures slower ripening with more complexity. Humidity is also lower, which assists our environmental friendly approach and the significantly lower winter temperatures contribute to even budburst. Environmentally friendly farming practices ensure the production of healthy grapes.

The farm consists of over 100Ha under vines of which 45% is red (Pinotage, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot, Malbec Petit Verdot & Mouvedre) and 55% is white (Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay Chenin Blanc & Viognier).

Soil Types

Similar to the Left and Right bank in Bordeaux, the Estate has a variety of soil compositions. It varies from well-drained, stone-rich alluvial soils to sand loam and combinations thereof which explains the different styles and complexity of our wines. Specific areas are selected for the production of quality wines in different styles.

To preserve these flavours and develop the variations in style, we insist on harvesting early morning. The ripening phase for different parts of the same vineyard block is carefully monitored and selected with a specific style in mind.

“The key is to focus on basic principles and create the best possible conditions for specially selected grapes, to ensure you optimize natures gift! Winemaking is like building a 5000 piece puzzle; if one small piece is missing it is going to bother you…”

– Kobus Deetlefs

Grapes are processed, blended and bottled under the watchful eyes of an experienced and qualified wine making team that ensures that grapes are selected at an optimum stage for the specific styles of the various ranges. Winemaking takes place against the backdrop of an environmental friendly approach, health consciousness and a strict Quality Management Program (BRC).

The Deetlefs cellar has a capacity of 1.8 million litres and combines the latest in modern technology with the well-worn traditions passed down through the generations. This allows each variety to be vinified in its optimum condition, bringing out its individual characters unique to the Deetlefs terroir.

The priceless advantage of intimate knowledge and experience built up over many generations create clear guidelines for the different styles that guarantee the “storyline” and customer satisfaction.

Deetlefs Bottling is a fully fledged and equipped bottling plant situated in Rawsonville and is part of the Deetlefs Wine Group. Deetlefs Bottling is certified according to the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety and E-mark SANS 1841.

The intake, stabilisation and filtration of all wines are handled and overseen by our qualified and experienced winemaker. Temperature controlled warehousing facilities are available on site.

Deetlefs Wine Laboratory provides a daily onsite service to the bottling plant with constant random analyses of all wines before, during and after the bottling runs.

“It is important to provide the highest level of scientific support to winemakers, so that they are able to produce wines of exceptional quality.”

– Kobus Deetlefs

Deetlefs Wine Laboratory is celebrating the exceptional achievement of having been rated the most proficient wine laboratory in South Africa for 5 consecutive years (2009 -2013) by the South African Wine Laboratory Association (SAWLA).

This modern, well equipped laboratory is run by a highly qualified team which assist winemakers in monitoring specific stages of the wine making process through accurate chemical analysis. These stages rank from the juice stage, through fermentation until it is bottle ready. Deetlefs Wine Laboratory provides services to about 30 other wine producers in the Breedekloof wine region which includes supplying chemical reagents for routine wine-analysis to clients as well as the analysis of waste water used for irrigation purposes. The laboratory operates according to ISO 17025 and BRC Global Standard for Food Safety requirements and is responsible for the co-ordination of the Quality Management Program for the Deetlefs Group.

Good wine making is a form of art and science is the sound foundation assisting winemakers in producing wines of consistently high quality.

These projects not only create opportunities for our workers but also contributes to the future of our country.” 

– Kobus Deetlefs



“The Standards guarantee the standardisation of quality, safety and operational criteria and ensure that manufacturers fulfill their legal obligations and provide protection for the end consumer.”



“WIETA is a multi-stakeholder, non-profit voluntary organisation which actively promotes ethical trade in the wine industry value chain through training, technical assessment and audits to assess members’ compliance with its code of good practice.”


Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) is a voluntary environmental sustainability scheme that complies with the Guidelines for sustainable Viti-viniculture: Production, processing and packaging of products’ as published by the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV).


“The BWI continues to enjoy global recognition for its leading business model that unites conservation and agricultural development in a complementary, mutually beneficial manner.”

Exciting, authentic, adventurous and different

The Breedekloof’s surrounding majestic mountains, unsurpassed location, climate, rivers and varied geology all add to a unique winemaking experience.

This valley of slow-ripening vines has one of the purist water sources in South Africa, cold winters and low humidity which minimizes the use of chemicals, a late bud burst, and a long ripening period. All these factors contribute to great flavor development in grapes and award winning wines.

From small boutique wineries to family-owned Estates and large cellars.

The Breedekloof is also a natural playground offering healthy outdoor fun for mountain bikers, runners, 4×4 enthusiasts, birders and fly-fishermen.