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  • Delaille Raubenheimer

AYAMA - Celebrating Italian Heritage in the Cape Winelands

AYAMA vineyards
AYAMA vineyards

Over the past three years, AYAMA Wines has celebrated numerous milestones, marking significant achievements in their journey. From the grand opening of the AYAMA Wine Cellar to the introduction of their "Agriturismo," featuring an authentic Italian Farm Kitchen welcoming guests every day, and a tranquil Guest House nestled amidst breathtaking landscapes.

AYAMA has just announced their latest creation: the first-ever Nero D'Avola - NERO DEL CAPO 2023, meticulously crafted by their team. This exceptional wine showcases a unique grape variety, originating from Sicily.

AYAMA Nero d'Avola
The newly released Nero Del Capo

AYAMA is a Farm located on the slopes of the Paardeberg Mountain, near Paarl, about 45 minutes drive from the Mother City. Its name is a "Xhosa" word which means "someone to lean on", the synthesis of friendship that unites the Italian owners, more precisely from Friuli region, who since 2005 have decided to start a new adventure investing in the rainbow nation.

Ayama logo it’s a Leopard, a tribute to leopards that live on our mountain. Paardeberg mountain is in fact part of the "Cape Leopard Project", which has registered six specimens on the mountain, monitoring their movements with camera traps.

The farm extends on the slopes of the Paardeberg for 250 hectares including vineyards (70 hectares), olive groves (10 hectares), the cultivation of artichokes (4 hectares), various horticultural crops, surrounded by fynbos and bush. The farm is historically registered in the ancient maps dating back to 1685 and was initially owned by a French Huguenot, Martin Pouisson who called the settlement "Slent" which today characterizes the name of the area and a well-known local road.

The synthesis of AYAMA's philosophy is the fusion of a wonderful territory with a touch of Italian style. This is why among the vineyards we can find Italian grape varieties like the Vermentino, the first planted in South Africa in 2014, and the recently planted Nero D’Avola.

The following cultivars can be found among the olive groves: Frantoio, Leccino and Coratina.

Artichokes also have Italian roots and the Sicilian variety “Violetto” has adapted incredibly well to the climate of this hemisphere. Similar fate for the "San Marzano" tomato which has been successfully planted and cultivated last year and which ended up on the national TV network for a competition between Chefs.

AYAMA is a farm that produces high-quality wines in an area that has climatic and geomorphological characteristics ideal for healthy and expressive viticulture. Beyond the Italian varieties Vermentino and Nero D’Avola, unusual grapes are grown such as Grenache

Blanc and Noir, Durif, Carignan together with the more well-known ones such as Chenin, Viognier, Shiraz, Merlor and Pinotage and the famous Muscat.

Since 2021, the farm's stewardship has been placed in the capable hands of Chiara Fabietti and Giuseppe Di Benedetto, life and business partners whose shared experiences in Italy, halfway across the globe, laid the foundation for their journey here. Their unwavering dedication and profound passion have catalyzed a remarkable evolution on the farm over the past three years. What was once a modest grape producer has undergone a complete metamorphosis, now boasting its own cellar, a charming restaurant, and a cozy guest house—culminating in what can only be described as an authentic Italian-style "Agriturismo."

Chiara Fabietti, winemaker and agronomist
Chiara Fabietti, winemaker and agronomist

Chiara is winemaker and agronomist. She follows the operations in the field and in the cellar to ensure the best quality, as well as the management of the team that takes care of the productivity and correct development of the plants every day. With experience in France and New Zealand, in Italy she worked for a famous Lazio winery producing Vermentino and extra virgin olive oil (Monti Cecubi in Itri in the South of Rome).

Giuseppe also comes from the world of the wine, with decades of experience in organizing big events to promote Italian wines, and in developing the marketing of wineries. At AYAMA he mainly deals with sales, marketing, promotion and hospitality. Their commitment is already bearing fruit, with award-winning wines and an active and vibrant farm that sees a continuous succession of successful events.

Pasta Making Classes, Italian Festivals, Artichokes Picking Days, have become events awaited by the public and are giving Ayama genuine notoriety for all those who want to live authentic country experiences and the Italian traditions that Chiara and Giuseppe want to pass on. Part of Ayama team live in the farm village, many were born there and are proudly the beating heart of the company's continuous progress.

The farm is open now to the public 7 days a week, involving the local team in welcoming customers. Some of them have followed Italian cooking courses and many have obtained the Cape Wine Academy certification and know how to present the farm and the wines. After all, who better than them would be able to illustrate to the public what happens "from the vineyard to the glass"?

Enhancing the potential of Ayama team is the constant objective of Chiara and Giuseppe who firmly say "Only by growing together we can achieve great results".

1 comentário

15 de jun.

Excellent article…. Love AYAMA…. Great wines, delicious food & fabulous staff…. My favourite place for a day out with friends.

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