Neil Ellis Wines - from solo career to renowned family business
Neil Ellis started his career with grapes, bought from other winemakers and in rented wine cellar. His great commitment and passion for South African premium wines made him to one of the most renowned winemakers in South Africa. In 1993 the time had finally come - together with the also successful Hans Peter Schroder the winery Neil Ellis was opened. With their "joint venture" the two founders produced elegant and high quality Neil Ellis wines. Today Neil Ellis looks back on two collections besides his flagship wine. The regional and terroir-specific wines originate from the different wine growing regions of South Africa: Jonkershoek, Groenekloof, Piekenierskloof and Elgin. From the very beginning, the winemaker has received the greatest support from his wife Stephanie, whose maiden name is reflected on the winery's flagship wine, Webb Ellis. Webb Ellis stands for the exchange of knowledge and wisdom. Values passed down from generation to generation, combining finesse and integrity. The most important thing with all Neil Ellis wines is that the character of the terroir is reflected in the best possible way.
"A quest for quality, no less!" - Neil Ellis
The wines of Neil Ellis are particularly distinguished by their high quality and elegance. Behind this is the philosophy that each grape variety has its own requirements for soil and climate - but a single vineyard cannot meet these requirements. Therefore Neil Ellis obtains his grapes from three different winegrowers from different regions. The vineyards of the Oude Nektar Farm in the Jonkershoek Valley in Stellenbosch are particularly well suited for growing Cabernet Sauvignon, as the slopes in the south provide a pleasant coolness on warm summer days. Contreberg Farm in the Groenekloof Darling region is mainly dry vineyards. The hilly area running parallel to the sea allows Sauvignon Blanc to mature particularly well. Constant temperatures combined with a refreshing Atlantic breeze make the wines fruity and complex. The vineyards of the Piekenierskloof are best known for Grenache, which is cultivated at 500 metres above sea level. Disease-free vines and extreme temperature fluctuations caused by hot days and cold nights make the character of the wine elegant, sweet and fruity. Last but not least, Neil Ellis also obtains his grapes from the Whitehall Farm in Elgin, which is considered one of the coolest wine growing areas in the Cape. Only ten kilometres from the sea, the fresh sea breeze ensures a longer ripening period and guarantees that the Chardonnay wines are concentrated and have elegant tannins.
Neil Ellis has a heart for the environment
The passionate wine expert Neil Ellis is not only concerned about the quality of his wines, but also about nature and the environment, which is the cornerstone of his Neil Ellis wines. Starting with the winery's wine cellar, which is specifically designed to reduce the environmental impact. With his own machinery and materials, Neil Ellis is always in control of the winemaking process and is able to reduce energy consumption independently. As a voluntary member of the IPW (Integrated Production of Wine) he pursues various environmental goals. For example, foreign plants that do not fit into the natural flora and fauna are removed, grapes are always harvested by hand to minimize soil compaction and chemical spraying is avoided. Neil Ellis' wines are produced with quality, passion and good great care and are recognised internationally.