Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Reserve 2021

Our new Chardonnay Réserve

Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Reserve 2021

A thrilling month for Haute Cabrière, we recently hosted media partners for the launch of the beautiful new Chardonnay Réserve 2021!

As a pioneering Franschhoek wine estate, we have become renowned for our Pierre Jourdan Cap Classiques and for creating wines made from Burgundian grape varieties. Our Haute Cabrière Range is our collection of lifestyle wines, made for life’s moments from lunch with friends, to sunset sessions and special occasions. Within this range is our reserve collection which houses our Pinot Noir Réserve, our pioneering Syrah and Pinot Blend – the Arnim Family Réserve, and now – the all new Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Réserve!

The Chardonnay Réserve

The maiden 2021 vintage marks an exciting addition to reserve wine collection, and we are so excited to share it with you. Takuan von Arnim, now Director of Wine for Haute Cabrière, noted that this wine is of particular importance as it extends our wine portfolio grown in the Franschhoek appellation. “As a winery founded in Franschhoek four decades ago, we are committed to expressing the uniqueness of the Franschhoek terroir and to further they valley’s reputation as one of the South Africa’s leading wine regions in terms of quality and provenance,” says Takuan. “We have always been captivated by Chardonnay and its ability to viscerally capture the sense of the geographical place where it is grown. Our new Chardonnay Réserve is a particularly welcome addition to the Haute Cabrière Range of wines as its vineyards grow within full view of our mountainside winery.”

Chardonnay Harvest at Haute Cabriere in Franschhoek

“The Chardonnay Réserve showcases the quality achievable in the Franschhoek Valley. Our diverse soils, mountainous terrain and attention to detail in the cellar leads to a balanced wine that stands proud in our Haute Cabrière Range of Reserves.”


About the vines

The grapes for the Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Réserve originate from two sites. The first is a vineyard planted in 1983 and the second is a block established in 2003. The vines are rooted in sandy loam soil which include silt and clay elements providing excellent drainage and a firm nutrient-bed for the vines’ roots.

Tim Hoek, now Haute Cabrière’s Cellarmaster, says that besides adding to the winery’s offering of top-quality Chardonnay, Haute Cabrière’s new Chardonnay Réserve underscores the quality of Franschhoek grapes.

“Our region barely constitutes one percent of South Africa’s national vineyards, but the collective aim of Franschhoek’s wine cellars is to ensure that each glass of wine from the valley is of premium quality reflecting the region’s exceptional aspects,” says Tim.  “One of these characteristics is diversity – no two Franschhoek vineyards are alike. As Haute Cabrière’s maiden Chardonnay Réserve shows, each vineyard parcel in the region has distinct elements showing a unique fingerprint of excellence.”

Haute Cabriere harvest in Franschhoek Valley
Haute Cabrière Wine Cellar Team

In the cellar

Following harvest from these specially selected sites, grapes were sorted, pressed, and fermentation was completed with a “sauvage” yeast, a natural yeast that that has been isolated. With freshness and complexity regarded as characters best for expressing terroir through Chardonnay, Tim says the wine is a result of two vastly different maturation components. “For depth of flavour and complexity, Chardonnay requires time in barrel,” he says. “A combination of 2nd, 3rd and 4th fill French oak barrels was used for aging 60% of the Chardonnay for 11 months. The use of wood allows the wine to form structure and palate weight, elements required to magnify the delicate fruit, floral and nutty characters for which the variety is known.”

The unwooded 40% element was kept in stainless steel tanks on its lees, for the same 11 months, before being blended with the barrel-aged component. “The unwooded element brings added energy and brightness to the wine, creating a Chardonnay that we see as a precise reflection of terroir offering the myriad of elements and features which mark Chardonnay as a great wine grape,” says Tim. “The Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Réserve shows zesty citrus notes complemented by an austere minerality with persistence on the palate, depth and a lasting finish.”

Perfect for this summer

The wine is absolutely ready for drinking now, but true to the character of fine Chardonnay, it will gain added complexity and bring further flavour elements to the fore if aged over the next five to 10 years. It is available from Haute Cabrière’s cellar door, online store and select retails national wide just in time for the summer months – serve chilled.

Tim Atkin: 90 Points 

An evolution in our exploration of Chardonnay, find delicate orange blossoms and grapefruit on the nose, with citrus, melon and toasted notes on the palate supported by good structure and integrated oak. With a lively acidity, expect a fresh finish.

BUY WINE OUTSIDE OF SOUTH AFRICA | To order from outside of South Africa, please visit our International retail list

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Our warm and inviting winery team is always eager to open a bottle and introduce guests to our ranges.

Feel free to ask questions during an informative and engaging wine tasting, or delve deeper into the vision and philosophy behind our wines with a guided cellar tour.

Haute Cabrière Wine Tasting in Franschhoek


Enjoy our family-inspired menu and tasty tapas while savouring time together over a bottle of wine.

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Haute Cabrière Restaurant Franschhoek


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Here, you’ll find a selection of home-baked breads and pastries, lovingly made pantry jams and treats, our full selection of wines, and more, to take home and enjoy…

Haute Cabrière Bakery & Deli Franschhoek

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