Stellenbosch, South Africa
Ethos: Create responsibly, give whole-heartedly, leave no trace.
An esteemed selection of cool-climate wines encompassing white, rosé, red and a sweet ‘Sunburst’ wine made from late-harvested grapes affected by Noble Rot.
Sitting on the elegant wooden terrace of the Delaire Graff estate, sipping wine whilst basking in a vista that stretches from the famed Stellenbosch vineyards out to Table Mountain and the Indian Ocean at False Bay, one feels rather like a film star. Wandering in to use the bathroom, you pass a marble and rosewood boutique glimmering with diamonds, and through the botanical gardens filled with over 350 types of plant and rippling water features, you’ll find a series of exclusive lodges each with its own terrace and plunge pool. Not just any winery, this is the vision of British jeweler Laurence Graff OBE who, after six years of development, opened his luxurious retreat in 2009, encompassing a five-star hotel, spa, two restaurants, three stores, a world-class art collection and, of course, a highly advanced gravity-fed winery producing outstanding Bordeaux blends and single varietal whites from prime spots.Your visit
High up on the slopes of Botmaskop peak, Delaire translates as “from the sky” and the experience here – whether an afternoon taking a ‘Tutored Tasting’ in the Lounge or a full night spent being wined and dined – is suitably divine. The Delaire Graff Restaurant offers contemporary South African food amid a statement setting of bright orange leather banquettes, whilst softer blue hues adorn Asian-inspired Indochine, which celebrates Cape Malay cuisine underneath a swirling flock of over 1,300 suspended Perspex swallows.
Such distinct artwork is a theme: a prominent collector of South African art, Laurence Graff has personally handpicked and curated each piece that adorns the estate’s walls and gardens from a much treasured personal collection. Many of these reside in the Owner’s Villa, the newest and most opulent of the lodges, featuring interiors by David Collins Studio, butler service, a private chef, infinity pool and Jacuzzi.
Another infinity pool can be found at the spa, where you can make your own botanical scrub from the estate’s flora or simply revel in some massage and straightforward pampering.The wines
The estate’s 20 hectares of vines benefit from a north-facing aspect offering decent sunshine for richness and concentration, high altitude and maritime influences bestowing freshness and acidity. Winemaker Morné Vrey produces excellent red blends dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, with impressive single block Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz and a 100% Cabernet Franc rosé. He also makes a Chenin Blanc from 35-year-old bush vines in the increasingly esteemed Swartland region, to the north of Cape Town.