It's thanks to our good friend Chris Mullineux that we had the tip about Alex's talent a few years ago. They studied together at Stellenbosch university and were roomies then, and went on to work a stint at Clos Erasmus in Priorat together when Eben Sadie was still involved there.
Alex's father used to farm in this same valley, on a property that has since been divided up into four prestigious wine farms. Having interned in 2006 at neighbouring estate De Trafford, Alex dropped in his CV with Keermont owner Mark Wraith just before heading off for a few months backpacking in Thailand with his then girlfriend, now wife Caryn in 2005. He vividly remembers receiving Mark's job offer in a stuffy internet cafe in Koh Lanta and preparing to come home. He has been in charge of the cellar and vineyards, and has made every vintage since their first in 2007.
Alex confesses that he plans much of his life around high tide and the surf, but fortunately, he only has to hike to the highest point of the farm to check out the waves, coincidentally giving him a chance to check in at the same time on one of their smaller Sauvignon vineyards that goes into the Terrasse. A modest man who always has time to talk about his beloved valley, philosophy and wines to any keen wino, he cites legendary ex Springbok player and vigneron, Jan 'Boland' Coetzee, (coincidentally Adi Badenhorst's father in law) as his greatest influence, and Eben Sadie, who installed in him the importance of making wines that speak of where you live. To create wines that reflect the natural wonder of this place, 'uncompromising yet chilled, perfect but thoughtful, natural but precise.'
"Alex Starey (winemaker at Keermont) is one of the new breed of Stellenbosch winemakers. I am considering asking the South African authorities to do a selection massale of Alex, maybe take graftings from his hair, in order to create new winemakers that can be distributed across the region.” Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate
"The Blaauklippen Valley in Stellenbosch is home to some extremely fine growers such as Waterford, De Trafford and Kleinood. However, it is Keermont that has its nose just in front." The Wine Advocate