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Our farm, brand and family:
The Dreyer Family bought the farm, Remhoogte south east of Hermanus in the Akkedisberg area in 1982. Piet Dreyer was doing commercial fishing at the time. They ran livestock and later planted citrus trees. Piet’s wife and children tended the farm in his absence. During 1999 the Dreyers planted 10 hectares Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Shiraz. Since then a few hectares were added every year, and the 68 hectares on the farm at present, includes plantings of Pinotage, Sangiovese, Viognier, Mourvedre, Petit Verdot and also larger plantings of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Sauvignon Blanc, making the farm self-sufficient as far as varieties needed for the different blends are concerned.
The farm is 17 kilometres from Stanford in a glen in the Kleinrivier Mountains, where the Klein River flows through. The Kleinrivier Mountains is the southernmost mountain range in Africa and its slopes provide a variety of aspects and soil types. The farm’s proximity to the sea ensures cooling breezes from Walker Bay in the afternoon while the South Easter blowing in from Agulhas on the Indian Ocean reduces the summer heat. The newly demarcated Klein River wine of origin ward is adjacent to the Walker Bay district and is cooler than the traditional wine growing areas of the Cape.
Our Name and Brands:
Piet Dreyer was a fisherman all his life. As a child, when he was about 16 years old, his father was seriously injured in a motorcycle crash and he helped his mother to support the family by catching fish over weekends and after school on a friend’s fishing boat. The sea and fishing remained his passion and he grew from ski-boat owner to freezer-vessel owner and the “kaalvoet (barefoot) skipper” on his vessel Raka became well known amongst the squid fisherman. Because of the squid squirting black ink all over the boat, Piet decided to have himself a black freezer vessel built, so that he need not repaint that often, and called it RAKA. (From the Afrikaans poem by N.P. van Wyk Louw, about an African tribe being threatened by Raka, half man half beast and as black as the night). He took this name as his brand when he ventured, with equal passion, into winemaking – hence the slogan: born of the sea, guided by the stars, blessed by the earth
Piet and Elna Dreyer are blessed with three sons and a daughter. Gerhard, the eldest, went into squid fishing after school, and is now shouldering a lot of his father’s responsibilities, leaving Piet free to realise his ambition of becoming a quality wine producer. Josef, the second son, obtained his B Agric degree from Elsenburg at the end of 2006 and he is now Raka’s winemaker. In addition he is responsible for accounting. Younger son Pieter, destined to become Raka’s viticulturist, is a student at Elsenburg, but has to fit in delivery and marketing between classes, and help out in the tasting room during holidays. Jorika, the Dreyer’s only daughter, recently matriculated from Overberg High School and can now give her full attention to managing the tasting room, a job she’s been doing part- time for the past four years. The whole family pitch in during harvest when every hand counts.
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