Lanzerac Wine Estate: Home of the world’s first pinotage

Lanzerac home to the world's first Pinotage, The Sip

Lanzerac Wine Estate, home to the world’s first bottled Pinotage and one of the oldest heritage farms in the Western Cape dating back to 1692, has been cultivating award-winning wines for decades.

Nestled in the Jonkershoek Valley between the majestic Stellenbosch mountains, this historic Estate’s rich winemaking history can be traced back to the early 1900s, when the first Lanzerac wine was bottled from grapes harvested on the farm. Since then, Lanzerac Wine Estate has cemented itself as a distinguished wine producer with a commitment to superior quality wines both internationally and locally.

The Lanzerac 1959 Pinotage

1925 saw Professor Abraham Izak Perold, the first Professor of Viticulture at the University of Stellenbosch, successfully cross two grape varietals, Pinot Noir and Hermitage (Cinsaut), to create South Africa’s first unique and indigenous wine grape variety – Pinotage. Several years later, Lanzerac Wine Estate became the first winery in the world to use the term ‘Pinotage’ on their label when they marketed the 1959 vintage under the name ‘Lanzerac’. This visionary release marked the birth of Pinotage as a unique variety from South Africa. The designation of Pinotage as the champion wine at the Cape Young Wine Show of 1959 caused a sensation, making Lanzerac Wine Estate synonymous with this South African grape variety.

To this day, Lanzerac Wine Estate, under the leadership of Cellar Master Wynand Lategan and Viticulturist Danie Malherbe, is still producing award-winning Pinotage, along with a wide variety of other excellent quality wines that form part of Lanzerac’s three tiers – the Premium Range, Heritage Range and Keldermeester Versameling (Cellar Master Collection).

A Sophisticated Wine Experience

The Lanzerac Tasting Room is open seven days a week and offers its patrons the opportunity to explore the Estate’s range of acclaimed wines in a relaxed atmosphere whilst surrounded by the breath-taking views of the Stellenbosch valley. Guests are invited to enjoy a selection of tailor made tastings suited to individuals or groups in the comfort of the well-appointed Tasting Room or on the veranda overlooking the scenic vineyards. The daily cellar tours, guided by one of the Estate’s expert Wine Advisors, offer visitors the opportunity to tour the working wine cellar and explore the rich heritage of the Estate. Complete the perfect wine experience at the neighbouring Lanzerac Deli, offering a selection of gourmet sandwiches, appetizing lunch platters and boards to share, all made from home-made deli items and locally-sourced charcuterie and cheeses.

Wine & Chocolate Pairing

The popular Wine & Chocolate pairing provides vino and chocolate aficionados alike with a unique tasting of five wines from the Estate’s Premium Range, paired perfectly with a selection of artisanal chocolates created by one of the leading wine and chocolate pairing specialists in South Africa. This indulgent tasting pairs the Premium Sauvignon Blanc with an almond and peach white chocolate, the Premium Chardonnay with a lime white chocolate, the Premium Merlot with a dark cherry and cigar chocolate, the Premium Cabernet Sauvignon with a Cape Malay spice milk chocolate and the Premium Pinotage with a mouse and biscotti dark chocolate. The Wine & Chocolate Pairing is priced at R120 per guest and can be booked through the Lanzerac Tasting Room.

Premium Range Tasting

Explore five wines of your choice from Lanzerac’s first tier, the Premium Range, with the Premium Tasting priced at R70 per guest. Guests are able to choose from eight wines including the Premium Pinotage Rosé 2017 – the first Pinotage Rosé made by Lanzerac, a Premium Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Premium Chenin Blanc 2017, Premium Chardonnay 2016, Premium Merlot 2015, Premium Pinotage 2015, Premium Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 as well as the Premium Syrah 2015 – the first Syrah made by Lanzerac in 10 years. Produced in larger volumes, the eight Premium Range wines are widely available and can be purchased from the Tasting Room, fine restaurants and retail outlets nationwide.

Heritage Range Tasting

For those with a more discerning palate, Lanzerac’s Heritage Range can be sampled for R150 per guest and includes a collection of 3 flagship wines, as well as the MCC Blanc de Blancs Brut. These exclusive wines are produced in limited quantities and honour some of the major role players in the Estate’s heritage. Current vintages include the Heritage Méthod Cap Classique Blanc de Blancs Brut (Non-Vintage), and the Heritage Mrs English 2016 Chardonnay that pays tribute to Mrs. Elizabeth Katherina English, the formidable lady who bought the farm in 1914 and changed the name from Schoongezicht to Lanzerac. Also included in the selection is the Heritage Le Général 2014 Red Blend, named after Charles Lanzerac, a French general who commanded the French Fifth Army at the outbreak of WW1 and who, it is rumoured, Mrs. English named the Estate respectfully after. The fourth and most famous cultivar is the award-winning Heritage Pionier Pinotage 2015, Lanzerac’s flagship wine paying homage to the very first Pinotage ever bottled – the Lanzerac Pinotage 1959 – and honours the Estate’s rich pioneering heritage and commitment to superior quality wines. 


Keldermeester Versameling

The Keldermeester Versameling (Cellar Master Collection) consists of three limited release artisanal wines, created by Cellar Master Wynand Lategan, that are available exclusively from the Estate. With no more than 1800 bottles produced of each wine and each bottle individually numbered, this range of boutique wines reflects Wynand’s own heritage and life today. The current vintages within the Keldermeester Versameling include the BERGPAD 2016, a Pinot Blanc named after the famous mountain path that runs from the University of Stellenbosch’s sports grounds along the Stellenbosch Mountain towards Lanzerac. The PROF 2016, a blend of Cinsaut and Pinot Noir, pays tribute to the father of Pinotage, Professor Abraham Izak Perold, whilst the third wine in this one-of-a-kind collection, a Malbec named DOK 2015, honours the legendary rugby giant, Dr Danie Craven, who regularly visited Lanzerac with his dog, Bliksem, in tow.

Award-Winning Wines

Over the years, Lanzerac Wine Estate has added a long list of international and local awards to their extensive collection of accolades. As the pioneers of Pinotage, the Lanzerac Pionier Pinotage 2015 has been the recipient of several prestigious awards including a 5-star rating in the internationally recognized Platter’s by Diners Club South African Wine Guide 2018, as well as being named one of South Africa’s Top Pinotage wines at the 2018 international Vivino Style Awards, whilst its predecessor, the Pionier Pinotage 2014, received a Top 10 finish at the prestigious ABSA Top 10 Competition 2017.

In February 2018, the Lanzerac Premium Chenin Blanc 2017 received an acclaimed Double Gold Award at the 2018 Japan Women’s Wine Awards. The Lanzerac Premium Syrah 2015 received the coveted Gold Medal for ‘Best Shiraz in Stellenbosch’ at the 2017 Novare SA Terroir Wine Awards and was awarded a Platinum Award later that year at the Michelangelo International Wine Awards, along with the Premium Chardonnay 2016 which took home a Double Gold Award.

Various Lanzerac wines shined in the 2018 Platter’s by Diners Club South African Wine Guide, with the Mrs. English 2016 and Premium Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 receiving 4.5-Stars, and 4-Stars being awarded to the Premium Merlot 2015, Premium Syrah 2015, Premium Pinotage 2015, Premium Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Premium Chardonnay 2016, DOK 2015, PROF 2016 and BERGPAD 2016.

The Lanzerac Tasting Room is open Monday to Sunday from 09h00 until 16h30 for tastings and sales, and doors close at 17h00. Cellar tours are available on request and take place daily at 11h00.

For bookings or enquiries, visit www.lanzerac.co.za or contact +27 (0)21 887 1132.

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