Delightful wines that consistently exceed expectations
We make wines that reflect the slopes, soils and climate they come from, for people who enjoy them.
This pursuit is the endeavour of many people, and many years. The communities deep-rooted in wine growing for generations, are a proud part of the Bonnievale wine brand.
The winery itself came about through the collaboration of local farmers and was initiated in the early 2000s. These farmers understood that a region’s best and most enjoyable wines can only be made with the widest selection of fruit from a vast terroir.
Today, Bonnievale Wines comprises four production cellars whose cumulative histories go back centuries. Our cellars process grapes from 100 member farms. Among them, the Elethu Broad-based Black Economic Empowerment farm established in 2007.
Combining with the farmers’ multi-generational experience and sustainable management of the land is a talented winemaking team. They match varieties with ideal terroir and usher fruit with cutting-edge innovation to becoming delicious and much-awarded wine.
Under South Africa’s legislated Wine of Origin scheme, Bonnievale is certified as being a producer of the Breede River Valley in the district of Robertson. Wines made here are proudly labelled Wine of Origin: Bonnievale – an independent guarantee that what’s in the bottle can be traced to our vineyards and their promise of great quality.
Rigg & the history of Bonnievale
Cape wineries each have an individual story to tell. Ours goes back to the earliest formation of our valley and the powerful tectonic forces that created the landscape.
Early farmers treasured this location for that very reason. When agricultural settlement began to gain momentum in the late 1800s, an early visitor to the valley was one Christopher Forrest Rigg. He would eventually unlock the potential that shaped the valley as it is today.
Rigg quickly realised the farming potential offered by trifecta of a sublime climate, fertile soils and the availability of water. He set about obtaining and segmenting land, offering it for private purchase, and lobbying trains to make regular stops here.
Importantly, he also turned his attention to creating a reliable network of irrigation canals. This was a historic turning point that allows the valley to thrive to this day. Various attempts had been made to funnel water to farmland from the river, but Rigg was the first to do so successfully. One part of the project, which required tunnelling with dynamite, was referred by newspapers of the time as “the greatest engineering project of its time in South Africa by one man”.
Soon, a town was born. Bonnievale’s first town council was established in 1922 and the first municipality was declared in 1953.
Rigg sowed the seeds for Bonnievale as it is today and named it too. This Scottish colloquialism for a “happy valley”, was inspired by Rigg’s birthplace in Scotland.
Christopher Rigg died in November 1926, while on a sea-journey. He was buried at sea.
Back in the early days, Rigg called the Bonnievale valley “the chance of a lifetime”. We like to think of ours as the best wine in the Cape and indeed, “the find of a lifetime”.
CURATED. CONVENIENT. REWARDING
VISITING THE CELLAR
To those looking for a real wine experience that is truly unpretentious, BONNIEVALE WINES promises delightful wines that consistently exceed expectations.
Mon – Fri: 09h00 – 17h00
Saturday: 10h00 – 13h00
Public Holidays: 10h00 – 13h00