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Ernie Els vintage report 2024

Louis Strydom/Leander Koekemoer vintage report

With colder weather upon us, the Ernie Els Cellar has officially closed its doors on the 2024 Harvest Season, and what an interesting season it was!

It’s been a tough year, with the Western Cape battling extreme weather conditions during the growing season. Right after bud burst, we experienced an unusual hailstorm, a rare occurrence in Stellenbosch. While this momentarily cooled down the soils, the vineyards quickly bounced back. Our high-potential soils are best suited for growing red cultivars, which tend to bud late, so at the time of the storm, the leaves were small and sustained minimal damage.

Heavy rainfall during winter last year left our soil water levels near capacity, and the vines responded well to the drier days that followed. Unfortunately, we faced further setbacks during flowering due to strong winds which compromised the main shoots, resulting in a lower fruit set.

Despite these challenges, the remainder of the season was dry, leading up to a harvest in which the vines thrived. Although overall production was the lowest it has been in the last 15 years, the reduced quantity means that we can expect exceptional quality from the 2024 season.


Ernie Els assistant winemaker Shannon Burger
Ernie Els assistant winemaker Shannon Burger

2024 marked Assistant Winemaker, Shannon Burger’s first harvest on the Helderberg at Ernie Els Wines.

“It’s a privilege to work with such exceptional terroir. This was a challenging year for the vineyards, but it gave me the opportunity to see first-hand how crucial soil quality is in nurturing our vines to produce excellent fruit. Despite tough conditions, the quality is outstanding, and we’ve taken great care to ensure that the 2024 vintage quintessentially reflects the Helderberg terroir.”