South Africa, Wellington, 9 February 2024: Doolhof Wine Estate has appointed widely acclaimed winemaker Rüdger van Wyk. Having built a solid record of internationally awarded wines, Rüdger now becomes part of the exciting evolution underway at the renowned Limietberg estate near Wellington.

“It’s with great excitement that we welcome Rüdger to the team,” says Doolhof owner Philip Richards, who acquired the estate in December 2020. “We are establishing Doolhof as one of the Cape’s top wine destinations and his appointment brings us a step closer while also amplifying the story of the incredible terroir behind our wines.”

The estate is located in a steep-sided valley against the Cape’s spectacular Limietberg Mountains. A range of elevations, aspects and soil types conspire with numerous microclimates in creating a unique terroir for the optimal production of premium quality wines.

It is specifically this setting that drew Rüdger to Doolhof. “Doolhof is a dream come true,” he says. “In addition to its established reputation, the brand encompasses a combination of story, magnificent wilderness, sustainability best practice and microclimate diversity that resonates deeply in me. The new challenge for me is to produce fine wines from these special sites.”

His wine journey to Doolhof has been nothing short of meteoric. Even the world’s most influential wine critic, Jancis Robinson, has recognised it as such, declaring in 2022: “Rüdger van Wyk is going from strength to strength… His wines are definitely worth looking out for.”

His wines have consistently been among the highest scorers in some of the world’s most esteemed shows and rating programmes. These include Wine Advocate, Tim Atkin MW’s South Africa Special Report, Wine Spectator, Stellenbosch Cabernet Sauvignon Top 100 Wines, the Decanter World Wine Awards and Wine Enthusiast. He is a trophy winner at the Trophy Wine Show and has seen a string of his wines receive five stars in the esteemed Platter’s South African wine guide.

In 2018 Rüdger was awarded Diners Club Young Winemaker of the Year. Two years later,  leading industry magazine Wineland identified Rüdger as one of the industry’s “Top 30” under the age of 30 years of age.

He is indeed, one of the shining graduates of the Cape Winemakers Guild (CWG) Protégé programme. Born and raised on the Garden Route, his wine journey began in 2010 when he began studies at Stellenbosch University. Rüdger applied and was accepted to the CWG programme, which opened opportunities including having winemaker Abrie Beeslaar as mentor, and to work in and explore the champion wine regions of France. 

Back home, new formative experiences took him from boutique cellar of Nitida in Durbanville and then to Stark-Condé Wines in Stellenbosch, as winemaker. Here, he was instrumental in converting the property to organic vineyards and acquiring its status for certified organic wines.

Throughout his career, Rüdger has been exposed to excellence at the highest level and the cutting edge of biodynamic and sustainable wine growing.

About Doolhof vineyards and its wines

Rüdger officially started at Doolhof in the first week of January. Harvest got underway on January 23.

“The grapes are very healthy and had a long and cool growth season, which is ideal for outstanding development,” he says. 

Within his purview will be its wine portfolio, comprising three ranges. Limietberg Limited contains single varietal bottlings representing the epitome of winemaking skill-meets-incomparable terroir. The Single Vineyard Series showcases quality within its given milieu while the Doolhof Mountain Range melds expressions from vineyards across the estate into quality and approachable styles.

Some 40 of the property’s 380 hectares are planted to vine with each grape variety faithfully wedded to its ideal terroir. A substantial focus is being place on Pinotage, Malbec and Chenin blanc.  

The largest swathe of the farm is uncultivated and home to indigenous fynbos, which motivated Doolhof to become a proudly accredited member of the Biodiversity in Wine Initiative.

In addition to being open to visitors for wine tastings, the estate is home to The Doolhof, a boutique hotel, glamping by Africamps and a restaurant.

Doolhof is open every day, Monday to Friday from 08:30 to 16:00, Saturday from 10:00 to 16:00 and Sunday from 10:00 to 15:00.

Follow @Doolhofwines on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Contact Doolhof on or +27 (0) 21 864 2805

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