Oude Molen Brandy - still hitting the mark

Oude Molen Brandy - still hitting the mark

Earlier this year Oude Molen Distillery was awarded two trophies in the 25th Michelangelo International Wine & Spirits Awards – an excellent achievement!

Oude Molen XO Cape Brandy was awarded the Grand Prix Trophy by Multi Color Corporation for the highest scoring spirits entered in the competition, while the same brandy also received the Brandy Trophy, sponsored by Mantis.

Oude Molen’s deluxe XO Cape Brandy is the pinnacle of refinement and luxury.

It is a rare blend of the finest batches of spirit, hand-selected and individually approved by the Master Distiller, every drop in this unsurpassed XO has been matured for at least a decade.

An abundant nose of peach, litchi and banana, hemmed by subtle traces of ginger and coconut. On the palate, an orchestra of flavours. The fresh, tropical notes of the nose are repeated and balanced by elements that can only develop after at least a decade of maturation: dried apricot, tawny port and dark chocolate. The delicate, focussed finish underscores this XO’s intricacy.

Enter René Santhagens – Oude Molen is born

The original Oude Molen distillery was established by Dutch chemical engineer and adventurer, René van Eibergen Santhagens in the early 1900’s.

René Santhagens (Photo: Wikipedia)

Having acquired his distilling skills in Cognac, he moved gathered his alembic copper pot stills in 1897 and relocated to South Africa where he was appointed distiller and cognac maker at the Eerste Fabrieken Distillery. Although this distillery was a success, production ceased during the South African war, and was never resumed again.

In 1903 René moved to the Cape and in 1909 purchased the farm Oude Molen at the foot of the Papegaaiberg where he established his own distillery. Very soon he earned a reputation for being a true perfectionist. Indeed, René’s methods were written into law in 1924 and still underpin the quality standards of Cape Brandy – double distillation in copper stills and maturation in oak barrels for at least three years.

Other Oude Molen Brandies:

Oude Molen VS:

A truly distinct Cape Brandy, crafted according to the methods of Rene Santhagens since 1910. After double distillation in copper stills, the spirit is matured in oak barrels for at least three years. A sherry-cask finish adds complexity and depth.

Tasting notes: Aromas of sherry-wood, walnut, apricot and sweet vanilla. Full, fruity flavours entice the palate with hints of spice and nuttiness. The finish is soft, abounding in character and long-lasting.

Oude Molen VSOP:

This exquisite VSOP is matured for at least five years in French and American oak barrels. A particularly delicate and balanced spirit, perfect for sipping neat.

Tasting notes: Caramel and fudge on the nose, with just a hint of citrus. The aromas are complemented by flavours of raisin, dried apple and hazelnut. A warm, lingering aftertaste completes this VSOP’s signature experience.

The original distillery in Stellenbosch, showing the original emblem and motto – still used today


Always hitting the mark

In days gone by Oude Molen was the site of an annual archery competition  – the targets being painted wooden parrots.

The top marksman received a trophy in the shape of a parrot, carved from solid indigenous wood. From this, René drew inspiration for his motto: Touchant Toujours le But –  Always Hitting the Mark.

It remains Oude Molen’s guiding principle to this day.

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