#WineNews : Kenyan wine brand Leleshwa shows off new “mature” look


If you thought that just because Kenya lies smack on the equator it would make it quite tricky to produce wine -and good wine at that- then you would be dead wrong! The Kenyan wine brand Leleshwa which has been around for the last 20 years recently unveiled their new, vibrant look answering to a growing taste for new latitude wines internationally.

A good bottle of wine should capture a time and the place it originates from and that’s the vibe you get immediately when you look at the new Leleshwa wines packaging. The range of Leleshwa wines include Sauvignon Blanc (Michel Angelo Wine & Spirits Awards Gold recipient), Merlot-Shiraz, the Sweet Red and a Rosé and they now carry an updated, vivid label of the Leleshwa tree – the inspiration behind the wine, with each of the varietals clearly differentiated by the color of the wine. The labels are also an authentication of the wine’s deep Kenyan heritage.

The anchor of each label is the captive Leleshwa tree in the area surrounding the vineyard and winery, emphasizing the synergy between the natural environment and organic elements that inspire the wine’s essence and vintage. The back of the label gives an overview of the wine, a profile of its appellation and tasting notes, recommended food pairings, the vintage and wine composition.

More ‘Winederlusts’ out there can now confidently add Kenyan wines Leleshwa to their wine adventures as the Leleshwa wine series depict the story of beating the odds and going against tradition to produce wines of value and quality from a place that wine making was always heaped  in the “don’t-even-bother-trying” category. And besides all that Leleshwa aim to maintain that unique heritage.

The new look Leleshwa offers a snapshot into the art of establishing vineyards and wine making on the equator, a process that has taken 20 years to understand and one that is getting better with an increasingly discerning market and growing lifestyle class.

“The new Leleshwa label package aims to show 20 years of authentic growing, producing and wine making with consumers while remaining fresh in a curious and changing wine market and besides proving that vines can grow on the equator, the re-brand just goes to demonstrate that Leleshwa winery hold a confidence in competing with global brands inspired by the quality of their produce. We now need to educate our local market on the quality of Kenyan wine.” – Said Mr. Pius Mbugua –Group Chairman , Rift Valley Winery.

The winery has in the last 5 years invested in new viniculture, infrastructure and different wine varietals with the aim of selecting varietals adaptable to the tropical Kenyan climate. A process that has led to the emergence of what is now popularly referred to as New Latitude Wines.

***The Rift Valley winery***

Leleshwa wines are produced from a 35HA vineyard in Naivasha with a current production of between 80,000 – 150,000 bottles annually. Rift Valley Winery aims at increasing the size of the vineyards to 70HA by 2017 to meet a growing appetite of wines in the local and international market. This will also see additional investment go into the setting up a new winery in 2016 to handle the increased production.

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