The land was purchased in 2001 by Peter Neill, with 6 hectares of 15 year old Chenin vines in place. The grapes from which had been sold to Villiersdorp Co-Op. Our first offering was Chenin Blanc 2003 made by Danie Truter at Onderkloof. The success of this let us to expand our planting and we now have some 30 hectares of vines, where Chenin and Sauvignon Blanc dominate on the white side and Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot on the red side. We have small plantings of Semillon, Mourvedre, Pinot Noir, and Malbec the latter of which yet has come into production.
Barton Vineyards lies at latitude 34 degrees south, 11 kilometres from the South Atlantic Ocean in the Walker Bay wine district of South Africa. The vines are planted on the south slopes of the Kogelberg Mountains at 190 metres above sea level where they absorb the cool breezes from Walker Bay, which come in every afternoon during the ripening season as the hot air rises.
The frost free cool climate and southerly aspect produces a slow ripening period which we believe is beneficial for the colour and tannin for the red wines and the concentration of fruit and acidity for the white wine. Our white wines up to 2006 were made by Danie Truter. Niels Verburg whose Luddite winery is in the Botriver Ward made our red wines.
In 2007 we built our own winery. Our winemaker P.J. Geyer made wine at Ingwe in the Western Cape and at Chateau Fonroque and Chateau Moulin du Cadet in St. Emilion for seven years until the owner Alain Mouiex decided to cease wine making in South Africa. His last position before joining was with Mont du Toit. As of now we are totally self sufficient, having our own grapes, our own winery and our own winemaker. We are excited with the quality of our grapes. Our 2009 Chenin won double gold status at the Michelangelo awards and by the breadth of experience PJ brings to Barton.