Niels Verburg founded Luddite wines in 1999 with the express intention of making world class Shiraz.
The grapes for this wine have been previously bought in from un-irrigated vineyards in the warmish regions of Malmesbury and Bottelary in Stellenbosch.. Niels has developed his production and his own vineyards in Bot River just South East of Elgin where he now grows Shiraz for the Luddite wine. Grapes for Shiraz are cooled overnight in a cold store, crushed and de-stalked the next day into open cement fermentation tanks. Allowed to cold macerate for three days the must ferments with natural yeast and then aged in barrels. His wines undergo light filtration to remove sediment but preserve character. The Chenin is sourced from his own vines at Bot River and has what Niels beleives is becoming its own unique style which represents Bot River Chenin. Niels owns other vines and buys fruit from other growers in SA to make his Secateur range but it is in Bot River where he is aiming for the stars and is starting to produce of amazing depth and complexity with drinkability in spades. It was a pleasure to meet Niels, a huge man with a very big smile and warmth. Wines often reflect the personality of the producer, and Luddite does that, the wines are big, powerful but also intelligent, very friendly and in no way prosaic, just like their creator.