Schenkfontein: A first time for everything

As the saying goes, there really is a first time for everything.   Harvest 2021 on Schenkfontein was no exception.    Along with the threat of a third coronavirus wave looming, masks worn in the stifling summer sun, and a cellar full of wine (from the previous vintage) still in the backyard, Schenkfontein Cellar experienced a few firsts, including national Carrot Cake Day.  

Harvest 2021 was bountiful, challenging and full of surprises

Celebrating the annual national Milk Tart Day on the 27th of February has become a tradition in our household, along with many other traditions that keep our close-knit family rooted.  Milk Tart day is celebrated slap bang in the middle of the wine grape harvest and is a welcome reprieve from long hours in the sun and in the cellar.

Milk Tart is as South African as koeksisters, biltong and braaibroodjies.  The smell of a Milk Tart fresh out of the oven evokes nostalgic childhood memories of camaraderie and contentment, sitting in front of an old Aga stove or a crackling fire, whilst the adults exchange stories sipping on a glass of Winkelshoek Muscadel.

The bite-size Portuguese custard tarts, also known as Pastei de Natas, are similar to the traditional South African Milk Tart, but the Portuguese clearly don’t have the same appetite as their South African counterparts – as the portions are significantly larger here.   The men of Schenkfontein are no exception.

So, when the womenfolk of Schenkfontein heard of national Carrot Cake Day we needed no excuse and promptly arranged a small celebration, the first of a new family tradition.   Carrots are after all a vegetable and known to improve night vision, which could come in handy in the early mornings during harvest season (wink, wink).

This year, perhaps a little inspired by Milk Tart and Pastei de Natas, we are making a wooded, dry Verdelho on the farm for the first time.   The grapes for this special wine originate from 20-year-old trellised vineyards on the farm Karookop, a nearby farm in the Piketberg District.

The soon to be bottled Verdelho

Verdelho is a white wine cultivar grown throughout Portugal but is mostly associated with the island of Madeira.    It is known for its tropical fruit flavours and nutty undertones.   Perfectly suited to our warm Swartland climate it is traditionally used for making sweet wine, because it has a natural high acidity that balances the sugar content of the grapes.   

Another first for Schenkfontein is the production of Marsanne.   This wine, made from grapes grown on the farm Kapteinskloof, holds the promise of a delicious complex wine with honey-like appearance and flavours of quince, acacia and apricot.

Both the Verdelho and Marsanne are destined for a new premium wine range.

Lazy pop-up pizza days on the farm

Join us for one of our pop-up pizza days on the farm and you might just get the opportunity to sample these, soon-to-be-released, premium quality wines.   Our family-friendly venue is ideal for a day out in the countryside with family and friends.   Keep a lookout for the announcement of our special open days on Facebook.  We would love to welcome you to the farm.   Who knows, an annual visit to Schenkfontein might just become one of your family traditions.

For more information click here, or contact Schenkfontein directly by dialing Tel: 022 913 8010 or send an to e-mail:

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