South African wine making tradition goes back for more than 350 years. The unique combination of old world wine making roots, coupled with new world wine making techniques, produces spectacular fruit driven styles of wine that reflect the unique terroirs of the cape. It currently reins in the top 10 wine producing countries in the world. Following the end of Apartheid, and the opening of the export markets, South African wine industry had to overcome a unsubstantial learning curve to be competitive in the contemporary world wine market. Much of the South African wine growing takes place in the Southern tier of the country, and is affected by the maritime influence of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. South Africa is able to grow many grape varieties, including Chenin Blanc, Columbard (Colombrad grape), Riesling, Chardonnay, Savignon Blanc – among their excellent whites, and Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot, and unique to South Africa Pinotage (a cross of Pinot Noir and Cinsaut) – among their outstanding reds. South Africa also makes excellent ports and sherries, sweet wines, sparkling wines and brandies. In short, South Africa can do it all very well and at very affordable prices!