A His­toric Ro­mance

SLOW Magazine - - Must Go -

Es­tab­lished in 1692, Lanz­erac Wine Es­tate is one of the old­est wine farms in Stel­len­bosch. Step­ping through its gates is like step­ping through a por­tal into a mag­i­cal world of 18th cen­tury charm with all of the mod­ern­day lux­u­ries of heated pools, Wi-fi, and air-con­di­tion­ing.

The Lanz­erac tale started with South African­born El­iz­a­beth Kathe­rina Jo­hanna Devenish, who struck gold when she mar­ried a young gen­tle­man by the name of Fred­er­ick Alexan­der English, a rather suc­cess­ful di­a­mond mer­chant. The young Kitta, as she was af­fec­tion­ately known, was whisked away to Eng­land to live in Ad­ding­ton Cas­tle with her new hus­band.

In 1909, tragedy struck when Kitta was left wid­owed in a coun­try which was not her own. She made the bold de­ci­sion to sail back to South Africa, where she pur­chased the farm that was then named Schoongezicht in 1914. Why then, was the farm’s name changed to Lanz­erac?

Dur­ing this same pe­riod, there was a fa­mous French Gen­eral, Gen­eral Charles Lan­rezac, who com­manded the French Fifth Army dur­ing the out­break of World War I. Though there is no recorded ev­i­dence of their ro­mance, it is be­lieved that Gen­eral Lan­rezac and Mrs English were in­ti­mate ac­quain­tances.

Whether the story is true or not, the Lanz­erac Win­ery stands by this his­tory, go­ing

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