The Lourensford Estate was established in 1700 and was once part of Willem Adriaan van der Stel's Vergelegen. The property was purchased in 1998 by the South African entrepreneur and businessman, Dr. Christo Wiese, with the aim of establishing one of the premier wine estates in South Africa.
The first plantings began in 2000 after extensive terroir studies. Today over 300 hectares have been planted with the ultimate goal being to establish 500 ha. The construction of the winery followed in 2002 and the first wines were vinified in 2003.
The magnificent soils and diverse micro-climates create the ideal terroir for world-class wines. Lourensford's vines are mostly situated on south and south-westerly slopes which have a moderate climate and benefit from the cool breeze from False Bay during the hot summer months. The bulk of the vineyards are planted on well drained yellow and red coloured apedal- and neocutanic soils of the Oakleaf, Tukulu, Pinedene and Hutton forms. Excellent water holding properties as well as a high cation exchange capacity ensure optimum soil conditions for high quality grape production.
Plantings currently include: Merlot, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Pinotage, Mourvedre, Petit Verdot. Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Chardonnay and Semillon. There is an annual process of establishing 40 - 70ha of new plantings. To fulfil the Lourensford mission of "quality without compromise", the vineyards are subdivided into 50ha units, each with its own manager.
All the vines are trellised on a seven wire Perold system with moveable foliar wires to enable maximum sunlight exposure and ensuring optimal ripening . Each vine is looked upon as an individual unit and oenological practices are adjusted according to differences in growth vigour.