Paul Cluver Wines
The De Rust Estate has been owned by the Cluver family since 1896 – they bought it to provide summer grazing for their livestock. Founded in 1986 by Paul Cluver (a retired neuro-surgeon), his eponymous winery became the first in Elgin. The property remains family owned and run and the wine business forms part of a larger holistic farming business, with apple and pear orchards and a Hereford stud. The estate also forms part of the UNESCO world heritage site, the Kogelberg Biosphere, which has over 1600 different plant species, making it one of the world’s richest sites for plant diversity.The estate is situated in South Africa’s Elgin appellation on the south coast of the Western Cape, around forty miles south-east of Cape Town. This is a cool climate region where Sauvignon Blanc, along with Burgundy’s Chardonnay and aromatic fickle Pinot Noir, shines on Bokkeveld Shale soils, and where Germany’s aromatic Riesling can also be grown, thriving on Ferricrete soils. The sustainably farmed vines are planted at an average height of 300 and 400 metres above sea level, with the highest vineyards at 500 metres. At Paul Cluver they focus on producing wines that reflect the uniqueness of their terroir, creating wines with expressive fruit and character. Such gentle, subtly persuasive wines with fine minerality and poise are hard to come by, yet at Paul Cluver they are to be found in abundance.
Paul Cluver’s Seven Flags Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are the benchmarks against which all other Elgin wines are measured; these are the ultimate expression of the estate's terroir. The grapes for this wine are a selection from one of their oldest vineyards planted in 1990 to clone 113; this is a Dijon clone known for being perhaps the most elegant of the Burgundy clones, giving perfumed aromatics to the wines. The wines are called Seven Flags because Paul Cluver says that whenever everything they believe about wine comes together, they fly all seven flags of their family crest on it! The flags represent God’s seven gifts to man – Knowledge, Strength, Love of God, Godliness, Wisdom, Counsel and Understanding. The ‘Latin phrase Est Unusquisque Faber Ipsae Suae Fortunae’, also appears on the Cluver crest, which translates as “each and every person is the maker of his own luck”, and this flagship wine from Paul Cluver will become one of South Africa’s legends!