Van Loveren Family Vineyards has been in the family since 1937 when Hennie Retief Sr. bought some land in the Robertson area. Previously, the property was part of a larger farm known as Goudmyn, the Afrikaans term meaning “Gold Mine” and a name that reflected the perceptions around the large sum paid for the original farm. This property was later sub-divided and Hennie started farming on Goudmyn portion “F”. His wife, Jean (her maiden name was Van Zyl), disliked the farm’s designation and said it stood, to her mind, for “fools and failures”. As a result, she persuaded her husband to rename the farm.
At first they contemplated calling it Roche Rouge, after the impressive red ridge of the Elandsberg Mountain that formed a backdrop to their home. Jean, a traditionalist, however, convinced Hennie to name the farm after Christiena van Loveren – an ancestor whose bridal chest was passed down for generations and remains on the farm to this day. Christiena was married to the first Van Zyl to arrive in South Africa in 1692.
Hennie Sr. made his first wine – a red muscadel – in 1939. More vineyards were planted; more wine was made; and, a new cellar was built in 1963 as his sons, Nico and Wynand, grew older. Back then the wine was all sold in bulk and it was only in 1980 that the first bottled Van Loveren wine – 500 cases of Premium Grand Cru – was launched.
From the mid 1990’s Nico and Wynand’s four sons joined the farm one after the other as they completed their studies. Today our four cousins are the driving force behind the company. Hennie and Neil are viticulturists, Bussell is the winemaker and Phillip is the Managing Director.
Van Loveren Family Vineyards offers various brands under the main Van Loveren brand such as Christiena, Retief Reserve, Van Loveren, /Almost Zero, Tangled Tree, Zandvliet, Blaauwklippen, and the Rhino Run, amongst others
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