Born of the sea, Guided by the stars, Blessed by the earth

Josef Dreyer

Josef Dreyer Winemaker


I grew up on our family farm in the Overberg where we farmed soft citrus and livestock. During 1999, when I was 15, I helped to establish the first vineyards on the farm, and had to take my turn watering them. I was at boarding school during the first harvest, but came home as often as I could, and was there with our first bottling of wine in 2002. Since then most of my spare time was spent in the vineyards or cellar

I matriculated from Overberg High School in 2003. My exposure to winemaking and its intriguing processes at such a young age provoked my interest. I decided to study winemaking at Elsenburg, and was fortunate enough to have Loftie Ellis as my lecturer and mentor. I studied for three years and obtained my BAgric degree in 2006, while working on the family farm and in the cellar over weekends.

In 2007 I took over the winemaking responsibilities at Raka. As a family-owned wine estate, we all need to dig in and help where needed, so beside my winemaking responsibilities, I am involved in marketing, get my weekends to work in the tasting room, do wine shows and make my own coffee!  

I married Madelize Esterhuizen in November 2009. We live on the farm between the vineyards, with my beloved dogs, Madelize's horses and plenty visiting snakes!

Raka wines that I made received various awards both locally and internationally over the years. In 2008 my 2007 Biography Shiraz won the trophy for Best Wine on Show at the Michelangelo International Wine Awards. More recently my 2010 Chenin Blanc was awarded a diamond award and won Trophy White Wine at the Winemaker Choice Wine Awards.  

These are not only personal achievements, but also testimony to our unique terroir and the efficiency of the Raka labour force and the able assistance of the cellar team, and viticulturist.

ARA - Industry Association for Responsible Alcohol use Not for sale to persons under the age of 18. Enjoy Responsibly.