Edwin, born and raised in Ireland, has been coming to South Africa since 1981. Previously, he was the largest sports tour operator to South Africa, and the first ever to take tourists into the Western Cape townships.
He inaugurated a bursary to educate 50 underprivileged children for the five years of their secondary education.
Very hands-on – some say he’s a control freak – he spends up to three months a year on the farm.
He used to have a 4 500-bottle cellar at his home in Ireland, which he sold to build the winery cellar at Doran Vineyards. His 84 bottles of Château Lafite 2000 bought the cellar’s 21 steel tanks.
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A wine lifer and Western Cape wine legend. He was born on Groot Constantia and went to Elsenburg, from where he took over the reins at Buitenverwachting. He created Buiten Blanc – the first multi-white cultivar blend, which now sells 70 000 cases a year. Andre’s son Adi has been at the forefront of the Swartland Revolution and its recent iconic international status.
André runs the farm and has done an exceptional job bringing it up to the highest standards, much admired by locals. He is an avid tree planter, which has increased substantially the beauty of the farm. He furthermore developed the farm’s cattle and sheep programmes.
Basson came to us in April 2012 as Farm Manager. He studied Farm Management at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology in Wellington and went to work at the Doornfontein farm as their manager.
Although born in Pretoria, the family returned to their Malmesbury roots where he found his love of farming on his uncle’s farm.
Basson has full responsibility for our 179 ha, where he ensures the vines produce the best grapes. He looks after the cattle, sheep and hen programmes and controls the growing of our oat/hay, the cultivation of which he innovated in the rows between the vines. Basson is married to Hilette who is brilliant at rearing the little lambs that have been rejected by their mothers. The couple have two Beagles: Benji and Lexi.
Martin spent quite a lot of his time in the then Natal where his father worked on farms. He now owns a farm in the Karoo although the family live in Mossel Bay. After school, Martin went to Stellenbosch and tried a couple of courses at Stellenbosch University before he finally settled on wine. Engineering didn’t offer him the same excitement.
He thought that he should know more about what he was spending all of his money on and changed to oenology. He qualified as the leading male in their class of 2010 and worked a year with David Nieuwoudt at Cederberg plus a vintage in France’s Rhône Valley with Les Vins de Vienne. This was his second overseas trip. His first was to Robben Island. He is married to Michelle with a daughter, Kirsten, and a son, Dirk. And Cinsaut, his Ridgeback!
Gretchen started working at Doran Vineyards in April 2016. Passionate about her work, she loves the new environment in the wine industry. She matriculated at Klein Nederburg Senior Secondary in Paarl and is currently in her final year in Office Management at Boland College. She has enrolled as a Bookkeeper at Boston College.
For her, it’s all about family, work and study. She’s a mother of two boys (14 and one) and a girl aged seven. Securing a better future and lifestyle for her family is her prime ambition. She’s a go-getter and is always willing to learn more, especially about wine. She has fallen in love with our Pinotage.
Pieter has been working on this farm for 20+ years. He was even here before it was a wine farm. He was born on the Sand Rivier Farm and schooled at Schooneoord. His first job was with Bernhem (now called Taillard) where he stayed for three years before coming to us.
He is responsible for the day to day running of the farm. He still plays rugby, now in his fifth decade, with his eldest son. Pieter is married to Natalie, our housekeeper, who has been on the farm since 1998. With three boys, Natalie says he is an adoring father and grandfather.