Our wines are produced within the highly acclaimed cool climate Elgin Region, statistically the coolest wine region in South Africa. The benefit of a cooler climate is that the grapes spend a longer time attached to the vine. This enhances flavour development as the grapes reach physiological ripeness more gradually with lower sugar levels and consequently lower alcohols.
A feature of the terrain on Oak Valley is a sequence of rolling hills set in an undulating countryside. There are currently 4 vineyard sites, 3 are situated on cooler south-facing slopes with the Merlot and Cabernet blocks situated on a north-facing slope. 30 hectares is currently planted, mainly to Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The oldest planting still in the ground dates back to 1992.
The Oak Valley soils are developed from ancient Bokkeveld shale that underwent intensive weathering and are therefore acid. The soils are predominantly comprised of reddish-brown, iron-rich gravelly material, underlaid by structured clay, with soft weathered porous shale still deeper down. The physical properties of these soils contain growth limiting upper layers over a water storing subsoil that marries perfectly with the climate and high rainfall of around 1011mm per annum, the second highest rainfall of South Africa's wine regions. This allows for moderate growth in the early season combined with some protection against heat and ground shocks during ripening.