Just as the history of Muratie dates back centuries, so does the Melck family vintage. And over the years they have invested in their staff this sense of family. Social upliftment has long been a cornerstone of Muratie's culture. Thus everyone on the farm is steeped in knowledge of the growing and winemaking processes - working as one for the betterment of all, as all close families do.
Winemaking on the Muratie Wine Farm is as much about the process as the end product.
While passion, tradition and a love for the land distinguish the growing and harvesting process, inherited expertise and modern technology combine to create quality wines. Home to the first Pinot Noir vines, the farm’s varietals friendly culture and all the estate grapes are hand harvested. The result –award winning wines that are testimony to the winemaking philosophy of one of South Africa’s top estates.
In 1987 the farm returned to the Melck family when Ronnie Melck bought it. Ronnie Melck had first come across the estate, and its colourful owner George Canitz, when, as a student at Stellenbosch University, he had to buy wine for his “koshuis” dance.
A replanting programme was launched at the farm in 1988 and some minor alterations have been done to the cellar, but overall the traditional methods and values of Muratie remain the same.
Our Winemaking Team
Wine making team: Hattingh de Villiers (Winemaker), Rijk Melck(MD)
Hattingh de Villiers - Current Winemaker
Previously winemaker at uniWines Group and Opstal Wine Estate in Rawsonville, Hattingh has also worked locally at Morgenhof and Seidelberg Wine Estates, and his international winemaking experience includes working at Chateau Montelena Winery in the Napa Valley, and Bleasdale Vineyards in Langhorne Creek, Australia.
A graduate of Elsenburg in B.Agric Cellar Technology, Hattingh also completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Wine Business Management at the Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town. He is also a Graduate of the Michael Fridjhon Wine Judging Academy.
Rijk Melck is very enthusiastic about Hattingh’s appointment as winemaker. “Hattingh’s comprehensive winemaking and viticultural experience, and strong leadership and team-working skills, make him a valuable and respected member of our cellar and vineyard teams. With his outgoing personality, he will also be assisting us with cellar tours and public tastings”.
Francois Conradie - Previous Winemaker (Dec 2005 - Jan 2014)
Grew up on a farm in the Robertson district and from there his love for the cultivating of grapes as well as the developing thereof into wine.
He studied B.Sc Agriculture (Viticulture and Oenology) at Stellenbosch University after which he spent eighteen months in London, where he got to see the most of Europe.
Back in South Africa he started working at Boschendal for four years –producing both white and red wines. During this time he worked at the well-known Chateaux Pichon Longville Comtesse de Lalande in Bordeaux for a harvest season, as well as a harvest time in Rheinhessen, Germany.
By the end of 2005 he joined Muratie Wine Estate as winemaker / farm manager where he is in the fortunate position to be involved in the vineyard right through to the final product –every step.
According to him the farm has got amazing potential and he enjoys every challenge coming his way!
Jacobus Williams - Vineyard Manager
Jacobus spends his working day in the vineyard and will provide high quality fruit needed to produce the premium, handcrafted Muratie Wines.
He has years of experience working at Boschendal.