The story of Plaisir de Merle – Our Namesake

The Petit Plaisir Wine
The Petit Plaisir Wine

The soaring peaks of the Simonsberg Mountain have long served as a guardian to the birth, renaissance and continuing triumph of Plaisir de Merle. For it is on the rolling foothills of this majestic mountain that vineyards thrive, producing grapes of exceptional quality and richness that would have found favour with our forefathers.

Fleeing religious persecution in France, Charles Marais and his family set sail for the Cape in 1687 and settled at the Cape in the Groot Drakenstein Valley. In 1693, Cape Governor Simon van der Stel granted land to the Marais family which they named after their home town, Le Plessis Marly. A deeply spiritual man, this land was Marais’ rebirth, a magnificent redemption where his spirit took hold and continues to flower to this day. In the hands of his inspired grandson, Jacob Marais the estate grew to be the finest in the region. It was Jacob who built the Manor House in 1764. With its elegant gable, the Manor House remains one of the earliest and finest examples of Cape Dutch architecture. Through various consolidations the modern Plaisir de Merle took shape, eventually passing by marriage to the Hugo family in the 19th Century and after several short tenures came under the ownership of Stellenbosch Farmers’ Winery (now Distell) in 1964.

The Petit Plaisir Wine

A Shiraz dominated blend. The wine has aromatic sweet raspberry and spice on the nose, ripe , dark fruits with sweet vanilla oak on the palate and a silky smooth finish. Although ready to drink now it will continue to reward over the next five years.

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