Southern Right is a 447 hectare property located in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley appellation, which lies in the Walker Bay wine district.
In a nutshell: Southern Right was founded by Anthony Hamilton Russell in 1994, creating a separate property from Hamilton Russell Vineyards, specialising in a more refined style of cooler-climate, clay-grown Pinotage. The aim was to redefine and re-energise the national grape. Sauvignon Blanc, was chosen as the white wine partner, based on its proven affinity for the area. The property is named after the Southern Right Whales which frequent Walker Bay (at closest just over 2 km from the property) and which are emblematic of the strongly maritime growing conditions.
Their Sauvignon Blanc is considered a fine wine rather than a simple varietal expression. Their Pinotage, often referred to as a “Pinotage for people who don’t like Pinotage”, has converted many to the variety and contributed significantly to the current Pinotage renaissance.
Sustainability, conservation and respect for the environment are all key considerations in the vineyards and at every stage of the vinification process. Through their involvement in the conservation of natural heritage, Anthony also manages more than 200 hectares of pristine Cape Mountain Fynbos which forms part of the property’s own private nature reserve. With each bottle sold, Southern Right makes a contribution to conservation in the area.
The terroir: The main focus is on producing terroir driven wines. Southern Right’s strong, cooling, maritime influence and extremely old and stony clay-rich soils, have allowed them to re-define South Africa’s unique variety, Pinotage. The lighter structured sandstone-derived soils combine with the clay-rich soils to produce a highly individual Sauvignon Blanc, with marked minerality and complexity.
The Southern Right ‘personality’: A strongly maritime, conservation-minded Walker Bay classic, with a distinctive Old World stylistic edge to its New World personality. The wines have proven highly successful in the on-trade in particular.