Located in the middle of the Namaqualand flowers, Cederberg Fynbos and West Coast succulent Karoo spoils us with an abundance and diversity of botanicals. Based on an irrigation farm in the spectacular Olifant’s River Valley allows us to grow some of our own ingredients onsite and gives us access to magnificent fruit, wine and citrus grown in the area. The bordering Sandveld and Swartland wheat growing areas provides us with abundant raw material for the in-house crafting of our own base alcohol.




Growing quality organic grapes is all about working with nature to manage and prepare the soil. This starts even before the vines are planted and continues as a symbiotic relationship between the growers and nature. This is only possible if you have passionate growers committed to working with nature not against it.

Koekenaap is located within the West Coast mist belt. The grapes are produced in the rich, deep alluvial soils of the Olifants River floodplain. The combination of this unique location, rich soils and organic cultivation conspires to produce fabulous wines. This is where 1st Principles hails from.

These unique grapes are then vinified by Derick and Kyle and their dedicated team at Stellar Winery. The rebate wine is certified organic.

The wine is then distilled into low wine in our century old copper still. This is a gentle and slow process utilising mostly solar energy. Once distilled, the high alcohol content preserves the low wine. The Vodka is then distilled for a second time in the copper still.  It is then batch distilled in a small column still to finish.

Finally, it is cut with purified water originating from the Cederberg to a final 43% ABV. All this dedication, effort and collaboration produces a uniquely smooth and subtly sweet vodka. The ideal sipping vodka or an elegant base for a Vodka sour, Martini or let you imagination grow.

A yellow bottle.
  • Pisco masquerading as vodka
  • Pumpkin vodka made from organic pumpkins
  • Sweet potato vodka made from organic sweet potato
  • Tomato vodka, the mother of a perfect Bloody Mary


Our range of subtle vapour infused grain-based gins specifically designed to complement your condiments. Designed to be subtle and reserved with its botanicals and not to dominate.

Our original range consist of a Classic Dry, a freshly brewed Rooibos and a freshly brewed Honeybush gin all made from first principles using fresh, locally grown as well as imported botanicals.

Our cocktail gin is an entirely different animal. Designed to be juniper upfront for those cocktails where you desire a strong botanical undertone. The gin is made on a grape-spirit base infused for an extended period with 22 different botanicals and then re-distilled with the botanicals in the pot. A classic dominant dry style gin.

A white bottle.


Wedged between the Cederberg and the Atlantic, the Olifant River Valley offers a plethora of microclimates. Fed with quality water from the Cederberg Mountains, it winds its way through constantly changing climates to finally spill into the Atlantic near Koekenaap in the harsh and arid southern border of Namaqualand and the rich Knersvlakte.

This is where 1st Principles Brandies start their journey, winding their way through hands of the farmers, winemaker, distiller and finally into oak barrels and into this bottle.

Brandies with heritage and a true sense of place.


Brandy is not made but slowly evolves and grows like the live feat of nature it is. A true reflection of what happens if the best of nature and man work in synergy.

It starts with the farmer and nature producing healthy grapes with character and personality. The winemaker, with the help of zillions of yeast cells then transforms the grapes into rebate wine.

The distiller with the help of copious amounts of copper contact coaxes the best raw brandy from this wine. Then it is the turn of the oak barrels and lots of patience to make magic.

Finally, after years of slow and patient development a product that can proudly call itself brandy emerges.


A red bottle.
  • Single Barrel Brandy