Boplaas Family Vineyards has just been awarded the title of Port of the Year and received a five-star rating from the esteemed Platter’s South African wine guide, arguably South Africa’s most influential wine publication. In addition, the celebrated winery also collected Platter’s highest ratings for no less than 10 of its wines.

The top achiever was Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve Port 2020, which follows in the five-star footsteps of the 2019, 2018, 2017 and 2015 vintages.

The Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve 2020 continues the Nel’s legacy of crafting the very finest Cape fortifieds. The winery uses Portuguese varieties and traditional vinification while remaining true-to-style in creating wine that offers decades of enjoyment.

The fruit for this wine was selected at optimal ripeness, hand harvested and fermented in lagars. Intense manual pigeage was applied to extract optimal flavour, colour, and tannin prior to fortification with wine spirits. It was matured for a year in old lagar pipes before being bottled, unfined and unfiltered. 

Inky black in colour with hints of purple-black on the rim, the wine shows a bouquet of crushed blackberries, tart cranberries, kirsch, and blue violets. Bright top notes of all-spice mingle with fynbos and savoury undercurrents on the palate.

As for the remaining luminaries, the Platter’s panel awarded 4½ stars to:

  • Boplaas Gamka 2020, a blend of Touriga Nacional, Tinta Barocca and Shiraz;
  • Boplaas Gamka Branca 2019, a blend of Chardonnay, Viognier, Grenache blanc, Verdelho, Chenin blanc, Roussanne and Sauvignon blanc;
  • The Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve 2020 and,
  • Boplaas Cape Vintage Port 2019.


Four stars were awarded to:

  • Boplaas Bobbejaanberg Sauvignon Blanc 2022,
  • Boplaas Cabernet Family Reserve 2020,
  • Boplaas Touriga Nacional 2021,
  • Boplaas Cape Ruby NV,
  • Boplaas White Muscadel 2022, and
  • Boplaas Red Muscadel 2022.


Of  these awards, the five-star ports hold special significance for the farm. Boplaas has long championed Portuguese grape varieties and been a leader in the making of local port-style wines. It has won the SA Champion Port Trophy no less than 10 times.

Winemaker Margaux Nel completed her MSc on the Portuguese red variety Touriga Nacional as a table wine.

Portuguese grapes thrive in the Calitzdorp region because they are hardier and well-adapted to warmer climates. It is anticipated that they will play a bigger role as the impact of global climate change intensifies.

The story of how these varieties became the focus of the farm begins with an accident. It was during the 1970s that Boplaas patriarch Oupa Danie Nel returned from a Swartland visit with the usual mementos, including a few bottles of Shiraz. Friends and neighbours made short work of the wine, so the decision was taken that this was a variety to plant.

Vines were sourced and established. Only later however was it discovered – in part by Carel, Oupa Danie’s son who is now Boplaas’s owner and cellar master – that something was amiss. Carel was still studying oenology at the University of Stellenbosch when it was revealed that his father’s vines were Tinta Barocca and not the intended Shiraz. A trip to Portugal followed and soon the Nels had befriended many of the Douro’s top port producers. Over decades they were exposed to fine fortified wines, acquiring the art of crafting them too.

The winery’s extensive portfolio of award-winning wines may be ordered directly from the Boplaas online shop at Deliveries are done across SA, free of charge on orders over R1 500.

For more information, email or call 044 213 3326. Boplaas is also on Facebook (

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