Babylonstoren Dairy products

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Babylonstoren recently won gold and silver awards for their water buffalo dairy products at the 2022 awards, so we were curious to learn some of their secrets.

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We asked the team to tell us about this company:

Please tell us when your company was founded, and some of its history.

This historic fruit and wine farm dates back to 1692 and has one of the best-preserved plaaswerwe (farmyards) in the Western Cape (area in South Africa). It was authentically reimagined by its current owners more than a decade ago to celebrate its history – and future.

Today, Babylonstoren is cherished for its magnificent formal garden, inspired by the historic Company’s Garden in Cape Town that supplied the spice fleets sailing between Europe and Asia with fresh fruit and vegetables in the 17th and 18th centuries. Each of the 300-plus plant varieties of the garden is edible or has medicinal value. The garden boasts a living library of historic rose and fruit cultivars, a splendid succulent collection, a kitchen garden planted with a variety of seasonal vegetables, thousands of clivias, a healing garden, exotic cycad collection and Spice House where tropical plants thrive. Every single aspect of Babylonstoren – including the contemporary Farm Hotel and Garden Spa, the Farm Shop, Winery, Meat Room, farm-to-fork restaurants, Scented Room and Bakery – is led by the ever-changing tapestry and botanical diversity of the garden.

Please tell us about some of the unique features of your cheeses?

Babylonstoren takes great pride in our range of fresh cheeses that are made on the farm in the Cheese Room. The unique feature of our cheeses is that we have our own herd of water buffalo cows supplying us with the freshest, pure white milk to make our range of cheeses every day. All our cheeses are made by hand every day.

We have two core fresh cheese offerings. One includes a range of products made with water buffalo milk, while we use Jersey cow milk for the other range. We source the water buffalo milk from our own herd, while the Jersey milk comes from a trusted supplier in Robertson.

At Babylonstoren, we make only fresh cheeses.  


What do you think are some of the unique meat products you have?

Our new favourite product is definitely our one-of-a-kind water buffalo gelato and the water buffalo panino gelato made with this creamy frozen dessert and stroopwafels! However, all our farm made cheeses are truly unique in that they’re made fresh every day in our very own milk room on the farm. Our Bocconcnini, mozzarella and water buffalo yoghurt are all testament to the wonderful quality of our very own water buffalo milk.

Please tell us what is unique about your manufacturing process, and your manufacturing philosophy.

The unique aspect of our cheese-making process is our full-circle farm-to-table process. Babylonstoren is one of only a handful of farms producing its own water buffalo products from our own herd. We started the herd in 2019 under the guidance of our dairy and poultry farmer, Christo Botha and his water buffalo man Kobus Lambrechts. Today, Babylonstoren boasts 121 water buffalo in total, with around 30 cows currently in milk production (this changes regularly). Each water buffalo also has their own personal name – and personality!

What do you think is your distinct advantage or reason for your success?

Apart from our thriving herd of water buffalo, we also have a secret weapon in our dedicated cheese maker Alta Eybers and her team. Alta honed her cheese making skills in Italy and is an invaluable part of the Babylonstoren cheese success story. She is constantly developing her range using the best farm ingredients.

What feedback are you getting about your products?

We have many returning guests to the farm who enjoys our water buffalo gelato and the water buffalo mozzarella. We supply our water buffalo products to the Babylonstoren Farm Shop, online shop and our restaurants, with the freshest handmade products. Each batch is a labour of love, perfectly made by hand – so the overall feedback we get is that the time we put into our products speaks of superb quality.

Another unique aspect of the Babylonstoren way is that we host workshops on our buffalo mozerella and gelato. We open our Cheese Room to other cheese enthusiasts and Alta demonstrates the craft behind mozzarella making – from cutting the curds to stretching them into balls. The class also includes a cool demonstration by Babylonstoren artisanal ice-cream maker Carla Hills of how to make your own authentic water buffalo gelato.

How do you see your company or product on the global stage?

Alta Eybers, our cheese maker, has had training both in Italy and locally. Her fresh cheese creations are therefore on par – we believe even better! – than what’s expected on the international stage. Paired with our farm-fresh ingredients, every churn of gelato or scoop of yoghurt is a worthy contender on the global stage.

Please tell us if you have any innovations in the pipeline for the future.

At Babylonstoren, we strive to always learn and grow and improve our offerings. Alta and her team are constantly working on new creations – like the limited-edition rosewater gelato made with water buffalo milk and raspberries, fresh flowers and pomegranates we did especially for Mother’s Day this year. We’re currently working on a similar show-stopping gelato for the upcoming festive season, as well as various soft yoghurt cheeses (hang-op cheese) infused with Christmas flavours.

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Contact Number: +27 (0)21 863 3852