In the Media
‘Organic’ might be a buzzword in winemaking but not at Avondale. Here it’s a way of life and a philosophy that permeates the winemaking, the viticulture and the people. The motto is Terra Est Vita (soil is life) and judging by Cyclus, life at Avondale is good.
Just as thrilling as it is to meet somebody you only heard of face-to-face, and realising they’re genuinely nice. it is equally wonderful to encounter a wine on the same basis.
The farm has been producing grapes since 1693, but Avondale Wines have only been around in its present guise since 1996 when the present owners acquired the farm. Avondale as a brand should be on one’s radar, but the lovely story and ethos behind the wine making on the farm might not be as well known.
Owner/viticulturist and all-rounds holistic living expert Johnathan Grieve regaled us at Fermier restaurant with tales about Avondale’s biodynamic approach to winemaking.
The winelands form a large part of property value in the Western Cape. And when it comes to the large risks involved in wine farming, it would make sense to ensure that you are getting the most out of your land. Jonathan Grieve of Avondale wine estate is not only making sure the land works at its prime for his business, but he’s also adding value to it while innovating in terms of farming techniques.
What was once regarded as a hippie aberration is slowly becoming a side of winemaking that’s no longer regarded merely as a fleeting trend or flavours of the month, but as the way forward for an industry that’s become worryingly dependent on heavy-handed farming practices.
With planet-friendly biodynamic principles keeping the vineyards happy, Avondale is no run-of-the-mill wine estate.
Terra est Vita. Soil is life. These three simple words underpin the philosophy behind award-winning Paarl estate Avondale, where a flock of snail-hungry ducks and farming to biodynamic principles are as important to what is in the bottle as the grapes themselves.
“Approved by Mother Nature” is an audacious claim to make but Avondale does not take it lightly. Subscribing to the ethos “Terre Est Vita”, which means “Soil is Life”, the wines of this certified organic estate are a true expression of terroir, thanks to the dynamic farming methods practiced be Avondale proprietor Johnathan Grieve. For Grieve, everything in life is part of a complex web of relationships and networks – which includes soil, water, energy, plants, animals and people.
WHAT has wine got to do with ducks mingling in a vineyard with men and women harvesting grapes while stark naked – all without care in the world about society’s sensibilities?
Back in 1996 Johnathan Grieve’s family bought Avondale, a farm in Paarl that had neither a winery nor the bragging rights for pioneering a new approach to winemaking. Fast-forward 19 years and Grieve is at a helm of a range of wines that can make any set of lips smack.
Guests at the La Luna dinner waited eagerly for the celestial guest of honour to make an appearance at this magnificent event, which renowned chef Jacques Erasmus created at the Avondale Wine Estate in Paarl.
Of course, no Christmas feast is complete without something to sip, so we kick off the festivities with a few glasses of Methode Cap Classique.