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Tanagra Winery & Distillery

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Tanagra Winery & Distillery

Address: Robertson Road, Vrolijkheid, McGregor 6708.

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Tel: +27 (0) 23 6251780

Email: Tanagra@tanagra-wines.co.za

Website: www.tanagra-wines.co.za

Opening hours: Tanagra is normally open from Mon – Fri from 9h00 -13h00 and 14h00-17h00. Sat 10h00-15h00. Sun10-13h00. This applies throughout the year, including public holidays. Closed Dec 25 and Jan 01. As this is a small operation and to ensure personal service, visitors are advised to make appointments.

Tasting fees: R40 pp. These will be refunded on purchase of wine or grappa of R200 or more.

Illustration by: eadmin

Tanagra is the first destination on the Meander for travellers heading from Robertson and offers a great venue for winelovers, grappa fans, hikers, twitchers and those looking for stylish accommodation in tranquil surrounds.

Some 4km from McGregor, a sign points to a wide gate which is usually open. “Bird-friendly destination” is the other sign that greets visitors who enter the driveway which curves round to the parking area.
Long-standing residents of the valley know just what Robert and Anette Rosenbach undertook when they exchanged life in Germany for the rundown farm and neglected vineyards they bought in 2009. Only the venerable gigantic Wild Fig tree – a landmark – remains unchanged.

Nearly a decade later, the farm is looking charming, distillery and tasting room are operating smoothly, the veld is pristine, the vineyards flourishing and the farm cottages very inviting. All testimony to a decade of hard and continuous work, while happy comments from guests from near and far offer proof of fine hospitality.
Back in 2009 Robert wasted little time in setting up his imported still with help from a German master distiller. Today he works on his own, distilling pomace and lees from superior cellars into impressive marc and whole orchards of lemons and stone fruit into eau de vie – the perfume from these operations fills the air with intoxicating aromas.
On the wine side, existing cabernet sauvignon, shiraz and cabernet franc vines were given TLC, and more recently have been certified as single vineyards for their Trails of Tanagra range. Although not certified organic, Tanagra practises sustainable and eco-friendly viticulture, which has contributed to production of some fine vintages.

Tanagra is a member of BWI, the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative whose members set aside portions of their wine farms for conservation.

Tanagra offers resident guests three walking trails: the Bluegum with its resident nest of a pair of African fish eagles, the Reed Route and the Old Dam and Vrolijkheid trail which includes an area where 40 species of indigenous plants are identified with signage.

WINES AND SPIRITS TO TASTE AND BUY

Trails of Tanagra is also the name given to the farm’s range of notable Single Vineyard wines, qv. A cabernet sauvignon/syrah blend called Carah is also produced from single vineyard grapes. Tanagra’s cabernet franc grapes yield two of the farm’s best wines – the classic red, natural yeast fermented and aged in oak for 14 months and its light-hearted sister the Blanc de Noir, outstanding quality and value, which sells out soon after release.
The lone white, Tanagra Single Vineyard Colombard, maiden vintage 2017, is evidence of what this humble grape is capable of when given five-star treatment.
Two classics, cabernet and shiraz and a merlot-led blend complete the wine portfolio.
The wines are crafted by talented winemaker Lourens van der Westhuizen, who, with Robert Rosenbach, is also responsible for viticulture.

The impressive quality of aperitifs and digestifs that make up the grappas and eau de vie impress both south African and Continental palates , while their prices are geared to please all pockets. Among the fruit-based eau de vies is one distilled from local organic quinces, unique in South Africa.
Tanagra’s delectable Orange Liqueur , which enjoys a huge following, offers consumers a fruity with a lower alcohol level.

Tanagra is a boutique operation, producing around 20 000 bottles annually. The focus, for both wines and spirits is on showcasing single vineyard wines and grappa and eau de vie that present the essence of the source cultivar . The winemaking philosophy follows the practice of minimal interference, use of native yeast and avoidance of oak dominance. Another feature is the presence of herbal notes which reflect the Klein Karoo natural vegetation which surround the little vineyards.

STOCKING UP
Apart from the home farm, Tanagra wines are stocked by a few outlets across South Africa. Robert delivers wine nation-wide so inquire about this service. For overseas guests, the good news is that the products are available throughout Europe and in Namibia.

LAST WORD
from the Rosenbachs:

“We aim to make wine that first and foremost is good, that reflects the unique terroir of this farm and some that is different from the mainstream cultivars. The latter includes the Cabernet Franc Blanc de Noir and the Single Vineyard Colombard which lifts a humble cultivar to a serious vinous level.
“Likewise Tanagra grappa and eau de vie are top quality niche products aimed at both the discerning connoisseur and the curious novice.”