My “wine knowledge” throughout my adult life basically consisted out of two ratings; wow I like it may I have more, or yuck... I’d rather not have any at all (less frequent occurrence.)   So you may ask yourselves why in the world I would subject myself to a category, on this blog, that requires proficiency in this field.  I expect my answer is twofold; firstly all the experts seem to indicate that ultimately the choice rests with the consumers taste. Secondly,   I appreciate good taste and when something is done in good taste or tastes good in Southern Africa, I can assure you that Travel and Trade South Africa will be blogging about it.  Which brings us to De Trafford Wine Estate in Stellenbosch, the drive to reach this place alone is worth the price of admission.  And after tasting the three Sijnn wines - I am now enriched with a third rating; I love this how many cases will fit in my car?

© Noleen Kutash

Just in case my ratings don’t bowl you over here are the expert’s ratings.


Sijnn 2007:                       4 stars (First entry)
Sijnn 2008:                       4 stars
Sijnn White 2009:            4 stars (First entry)
Sijnn Rosé 2009:              3½ stars

Sijnn 2007 :     Wine of the week Dec 2010

Sijnn 2008 :     Recently selected by Michael Fridjhon to represent South Africa in the best red blend category

       Sijnn 2007:                  90 points
Sijnn White 2009:       89 points

Sijnn 2007:                  91 points
Sijnn 2008:                  90 points
Sijnn White 2009:       90 points

Sijnn Touriga Nacional 2009:  First Sijnn wine on Auction and the first Touriga Nacional on Auction. Received following ratings:
Christian Eedes          95 points
Stephen Tanzer          92 points
Wine Spectator           92 points


This is an exciting new vineyard venture on a stony plateau between Malagas and Cape Infanta approx. 230km east of Cape Town. Together with a few strategic partners, a small run-down ostrich and grain farm was purchased early in 2004. The new and potential vineyards are located 60m to 70m above the Breede River, 25 km from the sea by boat and 15 km as the crow flies. At this stage there are no other vineyards within a 40 km radius, the closest being those inland around Swellendam and along the coast at Elim. The complex stony soils, together with a warm dry climate (350mm) moderated by the constant sea breezes offers excellent vineyard potential and the possibility of producing something unique. As this is quite a pioneering venture, extensive soil studies were undertaken and together with climatic data a variety of proven Mediterranean or southern European varieties have been planted, including Syrah, Mourvedre, Touriga Nacional, Cabernet Sauvignon and Trincadeira together with future plantings of Grenache. Chenin Blanc and Viognier have been planted for a white wine blend together with future plantings of Roussanne.

On 9 February 2007 the first grapes were carefully picked and transported back to Stellenbosch for vinification by the De Trafford team. De Trafford Winery is situated on the beautiful Mont Fleur farm set at the top of a dramatic valley above Stellenbosch, 380m up between the Stellenbosch and Helderberg mountains.

Production has grown from 10 tons in 2007 to 30 tons in 2009. All the vines are grown as bush vines with a max. expected yield of 3 to 4 tons / ha. The new wines were matured in a mix of new and old 700L French oak barrels, bottled after 17 months and are already showing a unique and appealing character.  Over the next two to three years they intend to build a small, boutique winery on the property and develop another 4ha vineyard and 1ha olives. This wine is also available in UK, Switzerland and the US, for more info on this wine and some other exceptional De Trafford wines go to....

Look forward to seeing you back here at Travel And Trade South Africa in the near future.. until then travel safe....