“Nowhere have I seen the sublime and the beautiful, the tame and the terrible so well arranged”
The written words of Sir John Barrow on a visit to the Franschhoek Valley during the first British Occupation of the Cape from 1795 – 1803. Nic Barrow had his namesakes words in mind when he and his wife, Ferda, bought a Franschhoek farm with the dream of producing only the finest Cap Classique. Over the past years they have planted it with the classic champagne varietals of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. The first harvest took place in 2012, with the maiden Brut and Rosé released in September 2015.
Nic & Ferda Barrow
Nic and Ferda Barrow are passionate about the finer things in life and put their hearts and souls into everything they do. This is testament in the many accolades and awards they have received over the years. The Barrows have been honoured amongst other by the Jewish National Fund of South Africa, for contributions made to President Nelson Mandela Park in Delft and the Walter Sisulu Environmental Centre in Mamelodi. Nic has been honoured by the ATKV and the Red Cross, as well as receiving a special award from The Oudtshoorn Business Chamber for his contribution to tourism, job creation and the local economy. Nic and Ferda also won the Sanlam Business Partners Entrepreneur of the year (Western & Eastern Cape) and the Barrow Family Trust was selected as a finalist in the Annual Business Day BASA Awards in the category Increasing Access to the Arts. The couple was honoured by the Simon Van Der Stel Foundation for their contribution towards preserving heritage buildings in the Southern Cape. The Barrows also donate several bursaries towards learners from underprivileged communities. The Barrow Family Trust is a corporate sponsor of the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra.
Nic, an attorney by profession, initiated both the KKNK (Klein Karoo National Arts Festival) and the Klein Karoo Klassique art festival. Along with Ferda he also owned and ran several hotels and property developments. Ferda, who studied and taught accounting, is an accomplished cook as well as an avid gardener. She has created both a show and vegetable garden at Le Lude – the latter producing fresh, seasonal harvests for the Orangerie. The couple have two daughters – Olga, an interior designer who created the décor at Le Lude, and Nicolene, the estate’s Executive Chef.
Nicolene Barrow – Executive Chef
Paul Gerber – Winemaker
Paul has a passion for bottle-fermented sparkling wine and when his path crossed with Nic and Ferda a bond was quickly formed.
A former schoolteacher with a passion for mathematics, Paul returned to the University of Stellenbosch and completed a BSc Oenology and Viticulture degree. During his winemaking studies he developed a keen interest in and fascination with the science and art of bottle fermented sparkling wine and early in his career decided to specialise in this exciting wine style. Soon after completing his studies Paul travelled to Europe to work and learn more about the fine art of bottle-fermented sparkling wine in, Franciacorta (Northern Italy), Côte des Blancs (in Champagne, France) and Germany. He travels to Champagne every year to hone his skills, take part in research and to spend time in the place and among the people, terroir and traditions that inspire his passion.