Takuan von Arnim is pretty good at juggling the past and future, and in fact, it’s all in a day’s work. As Cellar Master at the Haute Cabrière wine estate in Franschhoek, his task is not only to honour the legacy of the past, but also to ensure the future of the various Haute Cabrière brands in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
His father, Achim von Arnim, a visionary wine grower who established Haute Cabrière in 1982, is a legend in the local and international wine industry. In just 33 years the brand, characterised by its iconic Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Pinot Noir, Pierre Jourdan MCCs and Tranquille blend, has become firmly entrenched in the hearts and homes of wine lovers in this country and beyond.
Takuan has worked closely with his father over two decades, starting out as an apprentice and working his way up to the position of Cellar Master. He knows every aspect of the business and his vision is to build on the strengths of Haute Cabrière and to have a solid plan in place to ensure the brand continues to grow and prosper. He says, “It’s not about putting a bigger foot down or changing what is already a golden recipe, but rather taking the brand to another level. However, if I don’t have my own identity or expression in this art, Haute Cabrière will never evolve.”
He takes a “holistic approach” to running the business. There are the practical aspects such as cutting costs through strict administrative controls and ensuring top quality customer service as well as making sure the cellar is more production driven, while constantly addressing the integrity of the wines. He’s also hands-on when it comes to the marketing aspects of the brand and likes nothing more than being involved in the creative aspects of wine-making.
Von Arnim says he’s happiest when he’s in the wine cellar, focusing on expanding his own personal vision for Haute Cabriere’s wines.
The Haute Cabrière wine-growing philosophy, “Sun-Soil-Vine-Man”, will continue to be at the heart of the brand. The phrase represented Achim von Arnim’s belief in the expression of terroir, and that a wine is ‘grown’ rather than ‘made’. While this philosophy remains true, Takuan believes its explanation can be expanded to encapsulate the growth of the brand.
“The message is that, while staying true to the philosophy that underpins the brand, there is more to it. We’re adding to it, but remaining true to where we started,” he says.
Information: Haute Cabrière’s Tasting Room and Restaurant are both situated on Franschhoek Pass (Lambrecht Street), Franschhoek. Tasting Room hours are: Monday-Friday: 9am to 5pm, Saturday: 10am to 4pm, and Sunday: 11am to 4pm.
For reservations and enquiries email firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 021 876 3688.