A number of very good wine houses of South Africa are situated in Franschhoek: Bellingham, Chamonix, Haute Provence, L' Orrnarins, La Motte, and Plaisir de Merle. The white African wines of Franschhoek of today are often more traditionally 'French' than some French wines!
Durbanville African Wine Region
This African wine region is somewhat troubled by the encroaching suburbs of Cape Town but manages to survive. Durbanville is best known for its good quality red wines but also makes outstanding whites. Neighbouring Paarl enjoys much greater fame which is not entirely just but Durbanville is busily working hard to overtake its rival. Names that are known in Europe include Altijdgedacht, Diemersdal, eerendal, and Theuniskraal.
Constantia African Wine Region
This wine region is south of Cape Town and by far the wettest of all the South African wine region. This is also where the first Dutch settlers or boers planted their first vineyards. Constantia was famous for many years for its superb sweet Muscat wines but now produces wines of every type of good to outstanding quality. The best-known wine houses of Constantia are Buitenverwachting, Groot Constantia, and Klein Constantia.
Stellenbosch African Wine Region
Stellenbosch is not only the region that makes the highest quality wines, it is also the research and study centre for the wine industry. Renowned wines such as Alto, Bergkelder, Jacobsdal, Kanonkop, Le Bonheur, Meerlust, Middelvlei, Neil Ellis, Rust en Vrede, Simonsig, Thelema, and Uitkijk originate from this region close to Cape Town.
Stellenbosch is also famous for the quality of its blended red wines and also for superlative white and varietal wines. Kanonkop probably produces the finest Pinotage of South Africa.
Worcester African Wine Region
This is a fairly large African wine region that is responsible for about a quarter of the South African production. There are at least nineteen cooperative ventures in this region, although none of them is known in Europe. The many different soil types and varied micro climates between the Breede River valley and its tributaries means that there are widely differing wines ranging from reasonable to good.
A great deal of wine is also distilled here to make a very acceptable local brandy by KWV among others. Overberg (Walker Bay, Hermanus, Elgin) This tiny and virtually unknown region lies on the south coast about half-way between Cape Town and Bredasdorp. It is a relative newcomer that promises much for the future. The soil is broken slate and the cool, moist climate guarantees the finest Chardonnay of the country but also excellent Pinot Noir. Two absolutely outstanding wines are Hamilton Russel and Wildekrans.
Robertson African Wine Region
This is a fairly large African wine region between Worcester and Klein Karoo. It was once famed for its fortified sweet wine. Today it produces superb whites and reds of which the Chardonnay and Shiraz are truly outstanding. You can also find several sublime pure Shiraz wines in contrast with other regions where Shiraz is almost systematically blended with other grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon. There are plenty of good African wine houses such as Rietvallei, Robertson, Rooiberg, Van Loveren, Weltevrede, and Zandvliet.