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Black Elephant Vintners is a wine company that produces and distributes premium wines from selected vineyards and wineries in the Franschhoek valley

As producer, Black Elephant Vintners focuses on identifying and procuring quality estate-grown grapes cultivated within the Franschhoek valley and surrounding regions from which it produces and crafts quality wines.

As distributor, we act as an agent to private cellars that wish to leverage off our wine distribution network and sales and marketing platforms. We act as a virtual co-op for these wineries by representing independent boutique wineries that wish to have their brands marketed under the Black Elephant Vintners umbrella.

Our wines originate from, and are produced under, the “Wine of Origin Franschhoek” banner. The exception to this is our incomparable Back Roads label, whose philosophy is to produce wines from carefully selected vineyards, blocks and grapes that display unique and exceptional potential – be it in or beyond the borders of Franschhoek.

Our wines represent our sincerest endeavours to bring the Franschhoek experience to all wine lovers for the sole purpose of enjoyment and as an expression of our appreciation for our good life.

Black Elephant Vintners is an independent wine producer that strives to demystify wines to all enthusiasts and offer wine experiences without the pomp and ceremony commonly associated with the industry.

To this end, we introduce fun into serious winemaking whilst capturing the taste and terroir of the Franschhoek valley in our wines. Our diverse brand portfolio enables us to provide a range of wines with unique physical characteristics that appeal to different desires, tastes and occasions. It is our firm intent to ensure that our wines and brands are exciting, premium and distinctive at all times.

Black Elephant Vintners was born out of synchronicity, fortuitous friendships and a love for wine. Following on from the sale of Black Elephant Investment Holdings’ stake in Noah Financial Innovation in 2011, co-founder Kevin Swart uprooted his family and moved from Johannesburg to Franschhoek where he purchased a charming boutique wine farm, La Petite Vigne, situated on the outskirts of the Franschhoek village. Six months later, his business partner and co-founder of Black Elephant Investment Holdings, Raymond Ndlovu, followed suit and the Ndlovu’s joined the Swart’s in their fearless uncovering of a new life in the Franschhoek valley.

Having contracted Amistad Wine Company to assist in the winemaking at La Petite Vigne, Kevin eagerly set about learning the art and quandaries of winemaking whilst Raymond joined Invenfin to further hone his passion for business and private equity.

A chance discussion in November 2012 between Black Elephant and Amistad led to the joining together of Black Elephant’s business skills and the Amistad winemaking expertise. This moment lead to the joining of Jacques, our winemaker and the creation of Black Elephant Vintners in January 2013.

Work commenced with passion and vigour, setting the stage for an epic winemaking journey.

Wine Unplugged

Our winemaking philosophy

Black Elephant Vintners produces and represents premium wines from their own barrels and other boutique estates that share their wine style and philosophy.

The company produces quality wines that embody the region, the terroir and character of the grape. The winemaking process echos a purist approach, one that ignores fancy footwork and interference – an approach that will consistently offer high quality, limited supply, almost cult-like wines to boets and babes alike.

The brands reflect a raw, uncompromising and uncomplicated winemaking style that communicates our passion and commitment to the process of untainted winemaking.

Our wines represent friendship, community and a genuine partnership. We view it as our privilege to produce real wine for real people.

The labels capture and celebrate the character and personality of each blend, with each wine becoming a performance on its own. The company, the people and its wines are strong in character and personality. The overall result is a wine performance that is unique and not necessarily repeated – a wine performance that is unplugged.