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In 1685, he purchased a large 750 hectares (1,900 acres) estate just outside Cape Town, establishing the Constantia wine estate.
After Van der Stel's death, the estate fell into disrepair, but was revived in 1778 when it was purchased by Hendrik Cloete.
A Dutch surgeon, Jan van Riebeeck, was assigned the task of managing the station and planting vineyards to produce wines and grapes.
This was intended to ward off scurvy amongst sailors during their voyages along the spice route to India and the East.
A ward is an area with a distinctive soil type or climate and is roughly equivalent to a European appellation.
The roots of the South African wine industry can be traced to the explorations of the Dutch East India Company, which established a supply station in what is now Cape Town.
The reorganisation of the powerful KWV co-operative into a private business sparked further innovation and improvement in quality.