South Africa’s top 10 fastest-growing grape plantings

2. Ruby Cabernet

2011: 2,192.72 ha

2015: 2,406.01 ha

Number of hectares added: 213.29

% change: 9.7%

Ruby Cabernet is a cross between Cabernet Sauvignon and Carignan and was created by Dr. Harold Olmo in 1936 at UC Davis in California.

He set about created the cross to produce a grape that could withstand California’s hot climate. The combination was intended to capture the superior qualities of Cabernet Sauvignon with the resistance of Carignan to heat and drought, to produce an inexpensive table wine. (While designed for Californian climate, its creation mimicked that of Cinsault with Pinot Noir in South Africa to create Pinotage – see next slide). Typically, Ruby Cabernet it is used in bulk red blends to give colour, and in South Africa is more most prominently grown in the Robertson district. It is the main component in Van Loveren’s “River Red” blend.

Fun fact: Ruby Cabernet is one of  several “Olmo” grapes, created through crossings by Dr Olmo during his 50-year career. Other Olmo grapes include Symphony (Muscat of Alexandria x Grenache Gris), Flora (Semillon x Gewurtztraminer), Emerald Riesling (Rielsing x Muscadell) and Royalty (Trousseau gris x Alicante Ganzin).

One Response to “South Africa’s top 10 fastest-growing grape plantings”

  1. Isaac says:

    I want to farm grape in Ghana, I want the one that is very sweet without seed.
    Could you please help me with contacts in South Africa where I can get grape plant to develop my seeding for planting.

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