The owner of Highlands Road Estate, Michael White (of Scottish descent), is a lawyer by trade. He has seen to it that a dilapidated apple farm in cool Elgin was developed into a quality wine estate; a hobby that has gotten completely out of hand.
After purchasing the 26-acre fruit farm in 2004, the transformation began almost immediately with the planting of vines and then in 2006 a production and barrel cellar, tasting room and informal café were built.
The vineyards of Highlands Road Estate, carefully laid out on sandstone foothills of Table Mountain, Tukulu and Bokkeveld, are predominantly south and west facing to maximize the growing potential of the unique terroir. From west to east, the farm slopes slowly upward from the lower dam along the eponymous Highlands Road, while the south side falls toward Valley Road.
In keeping with the philosophy of making top wines at realistic prices, Highlands Road Wines now produces a range of premium quality wines. The wines all embrace elegance, the cool climate, freshness and fruitiness and a minerality driven character, all so typical of Elgin, South Africa's coolest wine region.
The creative, thorough and precise efforts of winemaker Vanessa Simkiss, active in wine for more than 30 years, seem natural, not only in the bottle of wine itself, but also in the consistently high ratings and awards received across the range from year to year. And thankfully, the end is not yet in sight.