History & Geography
Alto is a farm with a rich history, befitting its status as one of the icon estates of the Western Cape winelands. The first title deeds date back to 1693, but it was only in 1919 that the farm was given over entirely to vineyard. We are the oldest red wine only estate in South Africa and are celebrating our 100th harvest of our iconic Alto Rouge in 2022. Alto is situated in the heart of the so-called ‘Golden Triangle’, and the farm’s position on the warmer northern slopes of the Helderberg make it ideally suited to red wine production. Planted largely on soils of decomposed granite, the vineyards range in altitude from 100 to 500 metres above sea level. While generous late-afternoon sunshine guarantees concentration and colour in the grapes, the cooling sea breezes blowing in off nearby False Bay lengthen the hanging time on the vine to ensure phenolic ripeness and gentle tannins.
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