Hermanus winemaker Bartho Eksteen is known for his love of Sauvignon Blanc, the sea, his close-knit family and for incorporating Afrikaans in his wine works. He is quirky and perhaps a little eccentric. He has travelled to New Zealand and France to appreciate white Bordeaux – Sauvignon Blanc – as best he could. The lessons learnt have been applied at Wildekrans, Cape Bay (now Newton Johnson), Sumaridge and Hermanuspietersfontein. All great for starting his latest venture – Wijnskool. Wijnskool complements the existing brand Bartho Eksteen Wines
Wijnskool and Bartho Eksteen Wines are located on the Hemel-en-Aarde Road bordering Hermanus; between Southern Right and Hamilton Russell Vineyards. Here Bartho and his wife Suné have made a home, opened a tasting facility and created a space where they have been entertaining many friends since moving to the farm in October 2015. They moved lock, stock, barrel and even vine. Ten 23-year-old hanepoot vines were established on Wildekrans to celebrate the arrival of their eldest – Pieter Willem – and could not be left behind. These vines are now rooted outside the new tasting area as a souvenir to those early days.
With the hanepoot vines never far from sight Pieter Willem happily followed in Bartho’s footsteps. Today he is a winemaker and completely entrenched in the winemaking and sales of Bartho Eksteen Wines and the wine education offered by Wijnskool.
The Eksteens have made many memories and have also kept the memories of others alive. Previous owners of the Wijnskool planted rose bushes for the production of potpourri which they supplied to Woolworths. These roses are still rambling. Three paddocks are now serving as a foyer, office and storeroom. A tandem garage operates as a homely tasting room with musical instruments stacked in one corner. These instruments don’t function as decoration but are picked up and played by the family whenever the occasion demands a tune. All very authentic. All very Eksteen.
For more information visit www.wijnskool.co.za or phone 028 312 4612