Piennar and Son Distilling Company are located at The Cruise Terminal on the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.
This bespoke distillery specializes in Vodka and Gin a and thanks to their easily accessible location, offer tastings to visitors from 10am to 7pm Thursday to Sunday.
The Unique Distillation Process
Owned by father and son duo, this distillery has one of the finest stills in the country. Father, Schalk Pienaar, is a chemical engineer and has specialized in the alcohol and distillation industry for over 40 years.
Son, Andre, says, “Our continuous column still is probably the smallest continuous still on earth that is able to process solids that we know of. It allows us to ferment and distill on the grain and go straight from our fermentation to 96,4% alcohol in a single run without any filtering required.”
The passion behind Pienaar & Son
Whereas Schalk brings a huge amount of technical skill, Andre is the passionately creative and perfectionist master distiller.
I asked Andre what got him into distilling and he replied, “I bought a small 20L pot still in a time when everyone was making beer in the garage. I thought it’d be fun to make moonshine in the kitchen instead.”
He adds that his chemistry and biochemistry degree also helped.
It will be hard work finding a distillery with more qualified and experienced owners.
What’s on offer from Pienaar & Son?
At our 2021 Thirsty Traveler Annual Spirit Tasting I sampled the Waskis Vodka and the Orient Gin.
The Orient Gin follows the London Dry style of production and so it is clean and fresh on the palette but filled with lovely oriental spices.
Andre says, “The Empire is probably the more “traditional” of our gins, but I did not want to create a London Dry. There are enough of those and we wanted to create something fresh, floral and clean. If this lends itself to the London dry style, then that’s just coincidental.”
The Waskis Vodka is as pure as Vodka gets and I found it best to be sipped neat or on the rocks.
I can’t wait to try out the other gins, namely Dad, Ugly and Empire as well as the bread+ butter XO Finish Brandy.