Scholtzenhof, one of the very oldest wine farms in the Cape, was originally granted as Zandberg in 1689. Just ten years after Stellenbosch was founded, the original land, 64 morgen, was given by Governor Simon van der Stel to Frederick Boot, of Gotha (near Wagenheim in Germany), who later changed his name to Botha. History tells us this Botha is the forefather of that illustrious family of Presidents, first of the Free State Republic and more recently the old Republic of South Africa.
Mr Boot was a colourful character, a soldier who had completed his contract and hence a 'free burger.' He established the first documented agricultural partnership in the Cape with Jan Cornelisz (Jan Bombam) and fathered no fewer than eight children - out of wedlock, which earned him and his mistress banishment to Mauritius for 10 years!
In 1694 Frederick Botha planted his first vines and the construction of the house began that same year.
In 1833 another German family by the name of Scholtz took residence here, they changed the name to Scholtzenhof, and grew vines and farmed happily here for almost 100 years, then a succession of owners took up residence and the property fell on hard times in the early 1990's prior to the release of Mandela and the first democratic elections.
In 1993 the Forrester family came to the rescue, restoring the 17th century homestead, replanting the vines and developing wines of quality.
In 1994 the first wines were produced under the Ken Forrester label, and soon the award-winning wines were at the forefront of the Chenin Blanc revival. The grapes are sourced from vineyards - some of them more than 30 years old - in the cool Helderberg region of Stellenbosch.
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