Ashbourne is a 64 hectare property located in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley appellation, which lies within the Walker Bay wine district.
In a nutshell: Named after Anthony Hamilton Russell’s great, great grandfather Lord Ashbourne, Ashbourne was founded on the Eastern border of Hamilton Russell Vineyards in 1996 to create a single, extraordinary Pinotage in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley appellation. To many, their Pinotage is considered the best in the world. It is a particularly classic, cool climate “Old World” expression of the variety, which never fails to confuse tasters on country of origin and grape variety. In effect, it is an entirely new, but truly South African, expression of the Pinotage grape.
Research into the best possible white wine expression of the sandstone-derived soils on the property led to the creation of the amphora fermented and aged Ashbourne Sandstone blend as a white wine partner – the first amphora fermented and aged wine in South Africa. Overall, the wines of Ashbourne are considered South African benchmark blends. Ashbourne was identified as one of South Africa’s four “producers on the cutting edge” in the Wine Spectator and earned a place on their Top 100 most exciting wines of the year in 2013. They are committed not only to making great wines, but also to helping the local community, establishing the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley Pre-School with the aim of providing top quality education to under-privileged children in the area.
The terroir: A cool, maritime climate, Ashbourne Pinotage is grown on clay and iron-rich stony soils, well suited to drawing a high level of refinement and classic styling out of Pinotage. The wine is only released when bottle ageing has created additional complexity and appealing secondary character. Ashbourne Sandstone is grown on sandstone-derived soils with a high quartz gravel content.
The Ashbourne “personality”: Original and innovative, uniquely South African, but with classic styling. A discovery wine for aesthetically evolved palates wanting to try new and interesting things.