The why, the what and the how of...
Newton Johnson Family Vineyards
Newton Johnson Vineyards is owned and managed by the Newton Johnson family. The farm is based in the upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley near the seaside town of Hermanus, an hour and a half’s drive out of Cape Town. It is not only home to this special family but, in the words of Neal Martin, “to some of the best Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs you will find in the Capelands”.
The estate was started by Dave Johnson, a Cape Wine Master and holder of a thesis on Pinot Noir, and his wife Felicity (maiden name Newton). The family moved to the Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley in 1995, built a cellar and started planting vines shortly thereafter. Dave’s passion for wine, and Pinot Noir in particular, was soaked up by his sons, Bevan and Gordon. Bevan is largely responsible for the commercial activities at the estate and Gordon and his wife, Nadia, runs the viticulture and vinification side of things. They have taken this family estate and its vineyards to new heights in exploring the nuances of each grape planted. The Hemel-en-Aarde Valley has seen an explosion of quality Pinot Noir and Chardonnay being produced over the last decade and we believe this region, and the Newton Johnsons in particular, to be capable of producing wines of world class standards.
The focus at Newton Johnson is ever more on perfecting techniques in the vineyard and cellar that resonate the best with their conditions. The sloped vineyards face the southern winds of the cold Atlantic which couple freshness with the linearity and floral notes produced in the wines by the granite soils. It is a discovery of this translation from the farm that encourages them to make wines free from the distortion of modern convention and convenience – wines with purity of flavour and natural expression.
“Newton Johnson has long been one of the finest estates in Hemel-en-Aarde, in a large part thanks to winemaker Gordon Johnson and his wife Nadia. It is home to some of the best Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs you will find in the Capelands…but do not overlook their Rhône inspired Granum, a wine so good that it begs the question whether Hemel-en-Aarde should look south of Burgundy for their inspiration!” – Neal Martin for Vinous