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Stellenbosch Street Soirees

16 Feb

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Wine, dine and soak up the summertime vibes with an impromptu food and vino festival in this quaint Boland town

Enjoy grapes and gourmet during the languid summer months in the Cape Winelands when the Stellenbosch Street Soirees splash onto the calendar once a month on Wednesday evenings from December 2013 until March 2014. The next event is scheduled for Wednesday, 12 February 2014.

Presented by the Stellenbosch Wine Routes, this regular pop-up wine and food tasting event transforms the lower part of the historic town’s Church Street (between Bird and Andringa streets) into a culinary haven for connoisseurs and students alike.

Participating restaurants beckon visitors to sample their unique dishes at the street stalls, while representatives from wine farms along the country’s oldest and foremost wine route offer delicious vintages to wash away those weekday blues. What’s more, live music and entertainment is scheduled to get those feet tapping as the sun settles over the town’s oak-lined roads and ways.

Events Coordinator for the Stellenbosch Wine Routes Elmarie Rabe reveals that the layout and lifestyle of the “quaint town really lends itself to street ‘kuiers’” and allows visitors to “forget about the day’s hassles and hullabaloos.”

Plus, since Stellenbosch has unseated Franschhoek as the “Gourmet Capital of South Africa” (four of the Top 10 Restaurants in the 2013 Eat Out Awards are from Stellies), the evening soirees offer food and wine lovers a top-notch epicurean experience – and one that’s as affordable as it is fun.

TICKETS FOR THE 2013-2014 STELLENBOSCH STREET SOIREES

Each week the culinary fair features a different selection of cellars and caterers, and entry to this street party is absolutely gratis, mahala… FREE. For a mere R30p/p, revelers can get a wine glass and a ticket to taste as many wines as there are on offer on that evening. Food dishes are priced individually by vendors.

The event starts at 6pm and runs until 8pm

Best picnic spots in the Cape Winelands

16 Feb

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A good picnic doesn’t require much more than a patch of grass, a shady tree and a lovely view – and these are not hard to find in the Cape Winelands. Many wine farms invite you to bring your own basket, increasingly however, you can pre-order a delicious gourmet picnic – complete with ‘proper’ crockery, cutlery, condiments and coffee to finish – at one of the many wineries that have realised there’s hardly a better way to showcase their wines.
Here are 24 of the best spots in the Cape Winelands to enjoy a ready-made gourmet picnic this summer:

Spier

Picnic under one of the 21 historical Gables at Spier


You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to picnicking at Spier. You can sit around the lake or meander down the banks of the Eerste River. Choose your picnic box online or visit the takeaway picnic deli Eight to Go. Online you have the following choices: gourmet picnic (R298 a couple), relaxed picnic (R220 a couple), raw picnic (R320 a couple), vegetarian picnic (R270 a couple), heritage picnic (R300 a couple) and a kids picnic (R70 a child). At Eight to Go, situated close to the tasting room, you can fill your basket with fresh breads and sandwiches, roast chicken and much more as you make your way through the deli. Spier is spacious and comfortable and you can choose to take a seat at the picnic benches or lounge on the lawns. Picnic bookings must be made two days in advance.

Contact: Tel 021-809-1153 or visit www.spier.co.za

Blaauwklippen
For Cape specialties with a German touch, try the ‘picnic barrel platters’ at Blaauwklippen. In addition to pâtés and cheeses, the standard option includes a selection of cold meats, wienerwurst, oriental spring rolls, chicken samoosa and berry cheesecakes (R165 or R210 a person including a bottle of Landau Red, White or Rosé and a bottle of Aqua-Bella water per couple). The ‘exclusive’ option also includes delicacies like homemade melba toast, fried haloumi, pastrami and traditional pickled fish (R200 or R245 a person with wine and water). Kids can enjoy toffee apples, yoghurt, chocolate chip cookies and fruit skewers at R55 a person.

Contact: Tel 021-880-8222 or visit www.blaauwklippen.com

Zorgvliet
At Zorgvliet, you can create your own basket at the deli, or order the ‘Banhoek basket’ which includes sandwich ham and roast beef, blue cheese and cheddar with figs, olives and biscuits, salads, a beef, chicken or vegetarian wrap and something sweet (R395 a couple including wine). Grab a family basket with two salads, a whole roasted chicken, four baguettes and flavoured cream cheese (R375 including wine). A special occasion? Upgrade to the Silver Myn basket where the cold meats include parma ham, salami, pancetta and smoked chicken, and a selection of gourmet cheeses (R485 a couple including wine). For children there’s a jungle gym and a choice of two R55 or R65 picnics, one with a cheddar and ham roll and muffin, the other with a chicken burger and brownie (plus sweets, chips and a ‘squirrel’s beverage’).

Contact: Tel 021-885-1399 or visit www.zorgvliet.co.za

Hartenberg

Picnic at Hartenberg with a full spread and expansive views

Long known for its unpretentious hospitality, Hartenberg offers a country picnic hamper packed to the brim with Eleanor’s snoek pate, beetroot and cumin pate, homemade lamb and pork terrine, tomato and basil salad, potato salad, chicken and thyme tart, farm bread, rosemary foccacia, cheeses and a chocolate brownie. (R145pp including juice or a half bottle of wine!). Focusing on sustainability, the ingredients are sourced locally and the picnic containers are made of biodegradable materials. Enjoy it on the lawns, or take it with you along the estate’s popular wetland walk.

Contact: Tel (021) 865-2541 or visit www.hartenbergestate.com

Warwick
Warwick is the first estate in Stellenbosch to open 365 days of the year, where you can picnic and go on a ‘Big 5 Wine Safari’ (a guided 4×4 tour through the vineyards for R50 a person, R85 a person with wine tasting, free for children under 12). You can sit on the lawns spilling out onto the dam, where you can relax under umbrellas on scatter cushions and beanbags while being served by your own picnic butler; in ‘The Forest Courtyard’ a gravelled area with tables and chairs adjacent to the water feature and a jungle gym; or in ‘The Pods’, designer-rustic wooden shelters flanking the dam. Served in zero-carbon-footprint packaging, acclaimed chef Bruce Robertson’s menus change regularly but the promise is “to satisfy the most discerning palate and most sophisticated gourmand” (R299 for two, R49 for the kiddies’ picnic).

Contact: Tel 021-884-4410 or visit www.warwickwine.com

Hazendal
Hermitage restaurant at Hazendal offers a picnic (R130pp, R35 per child) comprising homemade bread, chicken liver paté, spinach and feta quiche, Greek salad with fresh homemade rolls, crispy chicken pieces, sliced ham, cheese and biscuits, chocolate brownies and fresh fruit salad. On Sunday afternoons you can also enjoy live music/theatre in the Plaasteater.

Contact: Tel (021) 903-5034 or visit www.hazendal.co.za


Morgenhof Estate

Take a seat at the bench picnic area or on the lawns to the left at Morgenhof


Morgenhof offers two meat picnics as well as a vegetarian option, all include a Greek salad, potato and spring onion salad, ciabatta, vanilla cupcakes and a selection of cheeses (R150 a person). Kiddies get a choice of a hot dog, beef burger or chicken strips with potato wedges, a juice and vanilla cupcake (R60 a person) Bring your own blanket and sit anywhere on the beautiful lawns.

Contact: Tel 021-889-2024. www.morgenhof.co.za.

Remhoogte
Remhoogte’s picnic basket (R250 for two adults sharing) contains french bread, a tub of olives and pickles, platter of cold meats and salads, cheese platter, a dessert and a bottle of wine (Remhoogte Chenin Blanc or Aigle Noir Red Blend). Enjoy while watching zebra, wildebeest and springbok graze metres away against a breathtaking Simonsberg, Jonkershoek, Stellenbosch and Helderberg mountain backdrop.

Contact: Tel (021) 889-5005 or visit www.remhoogte.co.za.

Vredenheim

Lush Gardens to relax in at Vredenheim


Now also home to a lion park, this estate has huge gardens dotted with gazebos and benches and there are many shady spots for spreading your own picnic blanket. Hudson’s restaurant offers deluxe picnic baskets containing a selection of cold meats and salads, fresh bread, a platter of cheeses, biscuits and preserves, fresh fruit and homemade muffins (R280 for two people). Bunny buckets for small children include a hot dog, cheese, crisps, juice and sweets (R48 a child).

Contact: Tel 021-881-3590 or visit www.visithudsons.co.za, www.vredenheim.co.za.

Zevenwacht
On tree-shaded lawns sloping down to the lake, enjoy freshly baked French loaf with snoek pate and chicken liver pate, rare roast beef sirloin with homemade mustard, grilled chicken fillet with a sweet chilli sauce, garden greens and baby tomatoes, potato salad, homemade spinach and feta quiche, selection of cheeses, biscuits and preserves, mini milk tart, koeksister and fresh fruit (R290 per basket for two; R390 for Halaal). The kids’ basket includes a chicken drumstick and cheese roll, chips, lollipop and fruit juice (R60 a child). You can also pre-book a choice of two braai baskets with the standard garlic bread, Greek salad, potato, chive and bacon salad, boerewors, a selection of cheeses, biscuits and preserves, mini milk tarts, koeksisters, fresh fruit and different meats depending on the basket (R290 or R360 for two; Halaal R450 or R475 for two; minimum two baskets to be ordered, wood, firelighters and grid provided). Order to be made 72 hours in advance.

Contact: Tel 021-900-5700 or visit www.zevenwacht.co.za

More info at: http://www.getaway.co.za/food/24-picnic-spots-cape-winelands/ 

Stellenbosch on foot

22 Aug

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Explore the “Village of the Oaks” with its shady oak avenues bordered by the water furrows of the Mill Stream.  Admire the charm and harmony of the Cape Dutch Architecture and listen to tales about the colourful inhabitants of three centuries.

Discover where Simon van der Stel set up camp in the Eerste River and why it is called the Eerste River.  Perhaps you will meet an angel at the “Angel Factory” or a ghost in the graveyard of the “Moederkerk”

Three fires destroyed the village.  Where did the fire of 1710 start and who started it? The first Christian Church building in South Africa was in Stellenbosch not in Cape Town. Today it is the site of the oldest hotel in South Africa,  d’Ouwe Werf, and not all the graves have been moved. Why did Stellenbosch’s first minister, Hercules van Loon, commit suicide?

Dorp Street, ‘the wagon way to Cape Town’ is the oldest residential street in South Africa today. It is still the wagon way to Cape Town, only the wagons have changed somewhat!

Historical buildings surround three sides of The Braak (village green). During the 1809 earth tremor people rushed out of their houses onto the Braak. It was later decided that the Braak would always remain an open area. Stellenbosch has produced many famous South Africans – Prime Ministers and Sportsmen. Rugby and Cricket was played on the Braak.  How did the Springboks get their name in 1906?  Stellenbosch, synonymous with rugby, but the first Stellenbosch Springbok – Nico Theunissen – was a cricketer.

In 1602 the VOC was established by the Here Sewentien. Four hundred years later the “Kruithuis” on the Braak proudly flies the flag of the VOC.

Rhenish Institute, the oldest girl’s boarding school in South Africa, celebrated 150 years in 2010. Rhenish was the first school to teach Domestic Science and Needlework.

I invite you to join me to hear many more interesting facts and fables about the past while experiencing the present in “The Eikestad”

Tours from 36 Market Steet:

Monday to Friday 11:00 & 15:00

By appointment 09:30

Weekends by appointment

R90 per person

For more info visit: http://www.stellenbosch.travel/what-to-do/attractions-activities/stellenbosch-on-foot

All you can eat buffet joints in Cape Town

22 Aug

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As the saying goes, “variety is the spice of life” and this is never more apparent that when choosing what to eat,especially in winter.

As a Capetonian with a healthy appetite, though, I say why choose at all? This is why my favourite culinary establishments in Cape Town are restaurants with all-you-can-eat buffet options.

In the Mother City, we’re blessed with a smorgasbord oftraditional and unconventional cuisine, so be sure to try the following buffet joints this winter:

TABLE BAY HOTEL

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and with the multitude of mouth-watering delicious choices (including sushi and oysters) Table Bay Hotel at the V&A Waterfront has on offer, you’re sure to get more than your fill. The delicious buffet is both halaal and vegetarian friendly.

Location: Table Bay Hotel, V&A Waterfront
Contact: +27(0)21 406 5988
Website: www.tablebay.suninternational.com

VISTA BAR & LOUNGE

If you have more of a sweet tooth and the idea of indulging in decadent caramel and gold leaf éclairs, cream-topped scones and macaroons gets you salivating, pop into the One&Only Cape Town’s Vista Bar&Lounge for afternoon tea.

Location: Vista Bar & Lounge, One&Only Cape Town
Contact: + 27 (0)21 431 5800
Website: www.capetown.oneandonlyresorts.com

HARVEY’S AT WINCHESTER MANSIONS

If you like your brunch with a side of jazz music, you simply cannot miss Harvey’s Jazz Brunch each Sunday at  theWinchester Mansions Hotel in Sea Point.

Feast away on eggs  cooked just the way you like it,  fresh sushi, decadent desserts and a glass of complimentary bubbly.

Location: Harvey’s, Winchester Mansions Hotel, Sea Point

Contact:+27(0) 21 434 2351

Website:www.winchester.co.za

LADY BEE DEHLI DINNER

A firm family favourite, this is the lunch and dinner stop for flavoursome Eastern, Indian and Malay cuisine. Dish as much as you want of their divine curries, seafood, breyanis, roasts and pasta dishes at any of their six locations in Cape Town and pay for your food according to weight.

Location: Crawford, Epping, Mitchell’s Plain, Observatory and Zevenwacht
Contact: +27 (0)21 534 1105
Website: www.ladybee.co.za

KAPRINOS

Gorge yourself on a variety of dishes, including irresistible home-made chicken curry, paella and more at the trendy Kaprinos franchise around the Mother City.

Location: Athlone, Northgate and Mitchell’s Plain
Contact: +27 (0)78 868 8703/+27 (0)21 534 1105
Website: www.kaprinosbuffet.co.za

QUARTERDECK RESTAURANT

Take a break between all of the entertainment at the Grand West Casino and fill up on some tasty dishes at the Quarterdeck Restaurant. Whether it’s soup, roasted meat or sweet desserts you’re after, you’ll find it all and more at this fabulous eatery.

Location: Quarterdeck Restuarant, Grand West Casino & Entertainment World, Goodwood
Contact: +27 (0)21 505 7220
Website: www.suninternational.com

BLOEMENDAL

The Durbanville Winelands are alive with the smell of great food as Bloemendal restaurants lay out their best gourmet food, featuring crowd pleasers like ostrich neck potjie, chicken pie, trifle and more.

Location: Bloemendal Restaurant and Conference Centre, Durbanville
Contact: +27 (0)21 975 7575
Website: www.bloemendal.co.za

Content copied from: http://www.capetown.travel/blog/entry/all-you-can-eat-buffet-joints-in-cape-town

Asara Braai Market

12 Aug

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There will be a number of braai stands supplied for the traditional SA braai, spitbraai, fish braai and a wine barrel braai.

The event is free – so get your family and friends together and fire up. Locally sourced meats including duck, chicken and fish will be on sale.

Want a braai experience with a difference for National Braai Day? Then gather your braai tool, taste buds and head out to Asara Wine Estate.

Venue: Asara Wine Esate
Date: 24 September 2012
Price: Free
Time: 10:00-15:00
Duration: 1 Day
Doors Open: 10:00

'Bites & sites' food tours

12 Aug

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Unique culinary walking tours in the historic heart of Stellenbosch and

cooking classes with locals.

Our logo says it all: Culture on a Spoon.

  • CLASSIC CAPE CUISINE WALK: Traditional Cape Food & Drinks, Wine-tastings, Leisurely walk, Historic sites, Trendy stops, Architecture, Outdoor art, Anecdotes.
  • DINE & VINE TOUR: One-day Stellenbosch Town and Winelands. Traditional Food and Wine, On foot, Historic town centre, Award-winning wine estates.
  • RAINBOW NATION COOKING: Xhosa cooking, Township life, Cape Malay cooking, Spices, Traditions, Authentic.

http://www.bitesandsites.co.za/

Stellenbosch on foot

12 Aug

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Categories: Stellenbosch

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Explore the “Village of the Oaks” with its shady oak avenues bordered by the water furrows of the Mill Stream.  Admire the charm and harmony of the Cape Dutch Architecture and listen to tales about the colourful inhabitants of three centuries.

Discover where Simon van der Stel set up camp in the Eerste River and why it is called the Eerste River.  Perhaps you will meet an angel at the “Angel Factory” or a ghost in the graveyard of the “Moederkerk”

Three fires destroyed the village.  Where did the fire of 1710 start and who started it? The first Christian Church building in South Africa was in Stellenbosch not in Cape Town. Today it is the site of the oldest hotel in South Africa,  d’Ouwe Werf, and not all the graves have been moved. Why did Stellenbosch’s first minister, Hercules van Loon, commit suicide?

Dorp Street, ‘the wagon way to Cape Town’ is the oldest residential street in South Africa today. It is still the wagon way to Cape Town, only the wagons have changed somewhat!

Historical buildings surround three sides of The Braak (village green). During the 1809 earth tremor people rushed out of their houses onto the Braak. It was later decided that the Braak would always remain an open area. Stellenbosch has produced many famous South Africans – Prime Ministers and Sportsmen. Rugby and Cricket was played on the Braak.  How did the Springboks get their name in 1906?  Stellenbosch, synonymous with rugby, but the first Stellenbosch Springbok – Nico Theunissen – was a cricketer.

In 1602 the VOC was established by the Here Sewentien. Four hundred years later the “Kruithuis” on the Braak proudly flies the flag of the VOC.

Rhenish Institute, the oldest girl’s boarding school in South Africa, celebrated 150 years in 2010. Rhenish was the first school to teach Domestic Science and Needlework.

I invite you to join me to hear many more interesting facts and fables about the past while experiencing the present in “The Eikestad”

http://www.stellenboschtourism.co.za/what-to-do/attractions-activities/stellenbosch-on-foot

Babylonstoren

11 Jun

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Babylonstoren is one of the best preserved ‘werfs’ (farm yards) in the Cape Dutch tradition. The days are intentionally unscripted at Babylonstoren, leaving guests free to do as theyfounding of the farm in 1690. The Koornhuis (for storing wheat and hay) and the old cellar are exceptionally fine. An ornate fowl house, pigeon loft, leaning bell tower and historic gates embellish a traditional courtyard surrounded by a low, whitewashed wall.

or vines being pruned – depending on the season. Enjoy a walk in the remarkable fruit and vegetable garden (guided if you feel like learning, or unguided for relaxation). Pick your own salad or enjoy a meal in the superb restaurant. Perhaps a massage in the spa after lunch? Or a stroll along a clivia lined stream? Then a swim in the farm dam or a

bout in the gym, before sundowners at a picnic spot? Or rather sample some of the excellent wines grown on the slopes all around the Simonsberg, possibly the finest terroir for wine in Africa? You please. Stroll out onto the farm of 200 hectares and see fruit being picked in the orchards
Babylonstoren lies in the Drakenstein Valley between Franschhoek and Paarl. Surrounded by the Simonsberg, Du Toitskloof and Franschhoek Mountains, Babylonstoren is in the heart of the Cape Winelands. It is some 60km from the city of Cape Town and an easy 45 min drive from Cape Town International Airport. can choose. Or simply lounge and read, in summer in a hammock strung among tree trunks, in winter curled up before a fire.

http://babylonstoren.com/about/

Bubbly and Sweet Treats

11 Jun

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‘Remember gentlemen, it’s not just France we are fighting for,
it’s Champagne!’
 ~ Winston Churchill, WWI .

Imagine what Winston Chruchill would have said if he only new that positioned in the charming Devon Valley lies the House of JC Le Roux, where bubbly and sweet delicacies are offered simultaneously.

The passion of bubbles has excited much thirst, and JC Le Roux as the first South African cellar dedicated solely to making sparkling wine has excited many a grape just plain fizzy.

The specialised ‘Bubbly and Sweet Delights’ tastings, pairs five different JC Le Roux sparkling wines with five home-made sweets crafted by Rodé Handmade Confectionery with natural ingredients. Delight, indulge, sip, savour; repeat. Nougat dipped in dark chocolate meets the nutty biscuit qualities of the elegant Methodé Cape Classic (MCC) Pinot Noir bubbles. The acidity of the bubbly elevates the honey and almond flavours while the berry notes complement the cocoa. The red berries and floral characteristics of the Pinot Noir Rosé bubbly is enhanced by the subtleties of the rosewater Turkish Delight. A bubbly palate of pear and litchi flavours with creamy notes and tones is tasted in the Le Valleé (MCC) which is accompanied by praline and pecan nougat arousing honey and nut notes.

Caramel coated cashew nuts enhances the tropical fruity tones of the La Fleurette rosé sparkling wine. Vanilla Fudge paired with Le Domaine bubbles cuts a mouthful of sweetness with tropical and floral influences. Bottled magic and tastes to sparkle over. Bubbles meet bliss; pop a cork, toast a flute and nibble on sweetness.

http://www.sa-venues.com/things-to-do/westerncape/bubbly-and-sweet-treats/

Oude Libertas Teater

11 Jun

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You are invited to join the summer audiences who relish in the delights of a unique season of top local and international performers under the stars in the Stellenbosch original theatre of the Winelands.

Music, theatre and dance once again find the perfect setting under the southern sky of Stellenbosch. Set among tall rustling trees, the famous open-air Oude Libertas Amphitheatre this summer hosts a top line-up of entertainment in a variety of presentations. Book your seat at the theatre (021 809 7380/ 021 809 7473) or at Computicket and share in the pleasure of this summer tradition.

http://www.oudelibertas.co.za/index.htm