AA Badenhorst Family Wines

Andre Adriaan (Adi) Badenhorst grew up in vineyards and as a child he was often to be found stealing grapes from the vines of some of South Africa’s best known wine producers. Wine certainly runs through the veins of his family: Adi’s grandfather was the general manager of Groot Constantia for 46 years, his father was born on that estate and eventually farmed the neighbouring Buitenverwachting and Constantia Uitsig properties. His own career was never really in doubt, and Adi recalls making his first wine with the legendary Jean Daneel when he was just thirteen years old.

After completing his studies at Elsenburg, Adi Badenhorst spent time in France working at Château Angélus in Saint-Émilion and with Alain Graillot in the Northern Rhône and then set off for a spell at Wither Hills in New Zealand. Upon his return to South Africa, Badenhorst did stints at Simonsig, Steenberg and Groote Post before settling down as winemaker at Rustenberg for what was to be a nine year stay. Definitely an enviable pedigree!

In 2008, he decided to strike out on his own, purchasing the 60ha Kalmoesfontein farm in the Swartland appellation with his cousin Hein and founded the AA Badenhorst estate. They farm their 35ha of mature, dry-farmed bushvines with minimal intervention and they make their wines in a traditional manner with what some might regard as old fashioned equipment, including a big old cement kuipe (open top fermenter). To Badenhorst, this is all part of the experience and the interaction that he and his family have with their land and their wines, and the immense character and charm of them all is a fitting testament to his philosophy.
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