Gerhard Swart

Head Wine Maker South Africa

“Winemaking is not just work, it is passion and constantly striving to be creative. It is the thrill of seeing a vineyard budding and growing through the season and producing fruit that is unique for each vineyard block. It is working with all these different terroirs and seeing how each wine has its own character, then finding ways to express and lift the uniqueness of each to nurture them until the day you can put them in a bottle”

Where it began


Gerhard comes from a family of farmers in the Overberg region and a career in agriculture was a natural fit for him. After holidays working at Bergsig cellar close to Wolseley while studying he decided to extend his study in winemaking at Elsenburg Agricultural College in Stellenbosch.

After this, Gerhard broadened his experience through overseas harvests. These include V.Sattui and Castello de Amorosa wineries in the Napa Valley, California as well as Hueges de Beauvignac Winery in the south of France.

In 2007 he joined the Constellation Wines group where he was in charge of all the bulk wine exports for Kumala.

With the acquisition of Flagstone Winery by Constellation Wines in February 2008, he itched to get his hands dirty in the cellar again, so he stepped into the vacancy of Winemaker and ever since contributed to the success of Flagstone Winery.

In 2014 Gerhard became the Head Winemaker of the South African portfolio, overseeing the quality of all the South African produced wines. He still remains the winemaker for Flagstone and making world class Flagstone wines remains his true passion.

Gerhard believes that making great wine needs total commitment and dedication and incredible attention to detail. Making great wines is not rocket science, but you need to do the right things at the right time and one of the most important decisions that you can make during harvest is the correct picking time.