Tag Archives: wine tasting

Sculptures at Saronsberg

Sculptures at Saronsberg
I find there's something terrifying about this statue - don't you? We discovered this sculpture (which I recall stood taller than I!), the sculptures below, and many more in the wine-tasting room at the Saronsberg estate. Kerry-Anne and I took quite some time to browse the various works of art, which (I have to admit) was due to my obsession to photograph every sculpture from almost every angle possible. :)

The estate is certainly worth a visit, even if only to visit the exhibition. Take care though, even though the estate known as Saronsberg, it's on the opposite side of the Winterhoek mountain range to the small town of Saron. Browse Saronsberg's website, they have a map that shows exactly where the estate is located.

Wine tasting at Solms-Delta

Wine tasting at Solms-Delta
The wine tasting at Solms-Delta was super-entertaining. The tasting expert was a descendant of the people who for centuries worked in the farm's vineyards - picking grapes and helping to turn them into wine. He kept our crowd of 20 people entertained with stories of the farm's history, tales of deceit and murder, and about how the various wines got their interesting names.

I'm not a connoisseur, so I can't comment on the quality of the wine - but it appeared as though the experienced people in our group were pleasantly surprised by both the quality and quantity of wine they tasted. ;)

Wine farms and wine dams

D'Aria Wine Farm
D'Aria, in Durbanville, is one of the lucky wine estates to have their own dam. Can you imagine how much water it takes to keep their grapes plump and juicy?

Incidentally, D'Aria is the home of the popular Poplars restaurant (map). I'm not huge fan of the restaurant, but many people love it, so I do think that it's worth a try at least - perhaps it's your kind of place. :)

Tractor-rides through the farmlands

Tractor rides

Early morning and sunset tractor-rides through vineyards are the best. I've just discovered how difficult it is to find somewhere (near Cape Town) to go on a tractor-ride. But nevertheless I've managed to find a wine estate in Wellington that does just this. Diemersfontein Wine & Country Estate offers tractor-rides for 6 people at 35ZAR per person - including a glass of wine! At that price the cynic in me says that it must be a glass for everyone to share, but Kerry-Anne's convinced that it's a glass per person.

Check out Diemersfontein's website and consider doing some of the other activities, like perhaps a picnic, horse ride or short hike.

Disclaimer: Diemersfontein didn't ask us to write this article, and, in fact, we've never actually been to Diemersfontein. If you decide to go, and then discover that it sucks (which I doubt), please leave a comment and let us know. On the other hand, if it's awesome, please leave some feedback too!

The fire(place) at Bloemendal’s Wynhuis

Fire at Bloemendal

No, there wasn't that kind of fire at Bloemendal wine farm's Wynhuis ("wine house") restaurant. This was the last stop on our all-too-fast tour of the Durbanville wine route, and even though it wasn't as cosy and boutique-like as the others, it was larger, offered food for sale, and had this warm fire glowing so that those not tasting the wine could warm up too. :)

I can't say what the wine tasted like - by this time I'd decided that I'd had enough wine (because, to be honest, I'm not as in love with wine as some of you may be). ;)

Take a look at our route map; the Wynhuis is at the end of the route (on the left).

De Vallei boutique wine

The Cabernet Sauvignon of De Vallei

The Durbanville wine route has been the subject of the last two posts, and as long as you're not getting bored, after today I have two final photos in the series.

I took this photo in the cool and damp concrete cellar of De Vallei, a boutique wine producer found along the Durbanville wine route mentioned in my first post of this series.

The subject of this photo, the words "Cabernet Sauvignon", is in fact not (as I once believed) a type of wine, but rather a type of grape. What I'm sure the wine connoisseurs among us already know is that the red Cabernet Sauvignon grape is in fact a crossing of two varieties of grape, the red Cabernet Franc and the white Sauvignon Blanc! Go figure; I guess it should have been obvious, but I had never considered this before.

So now, the question is: don't you think this should make Cabernet Sauvignon a rosé grape? ;)

Altydgedacht on the Durbanville Wine Route

Lilies at Altydgedacht

We arrived at Altydgedacht wine farm in our "fun vehicle" (see yesterday's post), with AC/DC's Thunderstruck blaring. It was a tranquil environment - that is, before our merry crowd arrived. The occasion was a celebration of Guinivea's birthday in the form of a road-trip from wine farm to wine farm. I guess we felt that the occasion warranted at least some kind of commotion on arrival!

The music stopped along with our vehicle, and we piled out, ready for our first tasting. The portion of the farm where tasting is done is unfortunately not particularly pretty. Yet, I captured this photo of the beautiful Arum Lilies that the farm's owner popped in to drop off.

Incidentally, the first title deeds for the land were signed by Simon van der Stel in 1698! The property was called Tygerberg back then and only later renamed to Altydgedacht. Tygerberg is now the name of the the area of which the suburbs of Durbanville and Bellville form part.

In case you're in the mood for a bunch of Arum Lilies, they charge only R10 for a bunch like this one. What a huge bargain!

Durbanville wine route

Wine tasting in Durbanville

I don't suppose that anyone can guess what we spent the afternoon doing? Of course, driving from wine farm to wine farm (in a rather fun vehicle) tasting wine!

Besides for the mode of transport and the fact that we didn't know 4 of the 6 people we went with, what was awesome about this particular expedition was that we didn't do the traditional and well-worn Stellenbosch wine route. This time we stayed close to home (in fact, only 5 minutes away from home) and toured around the Durbanville wine area. I took a moment to draw the short route that we drove - click here to see the map.