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Our Favourite Places to do Wine Tastings in and around Cape Town
Our selection of must-try sip and swirl sessions for locals and visitors alike
Last Update 10 February 2017
Living in or visiting the Western Cape means that you are spoilt for choice when it comes to wanting to indulge in a mind-blowing wine tasting session. With world-class wine regions and top-notch wine farms practically on your doorstep, a mouth-watering sip-and-swirl sitting is often, literally, minutes away.
But in order to help you negotiate and make the most of the Winelands, we’ve rounded up a few of the coolest wine tasting options in and around Cape Town. From sessions that include a tasty food pairing- think chocolate and cheese- to ones preceded by a Segway tour (more on that later), there’s definitely something for everyone and every budget.
WINE TASTINGS IN AND AROUND CAPE TOWN
The Spier Wine Farm
With award-winning vino and delicious nosh on offer, a wine tasting at Spier is one of the most popular options in the Stellenbosch area. There are three options: The Spier tasting, which lets you sip three of its Signature range wines as well as one vino from each of its 21 Gables and Creative Block premium ranges; the chocolate and wine pairing, which, as the name suggests, sees the farm’s signature Méthode Cap Classique and Creative Block blends complemented by specially curated chocolates; and the Frans K Smit session, which comprises two premium ranges and the farm’s flagship offering, Frans K Smit. Planning a family outing? Well, there is also a kiddies’ grape juice tasting available. Do note that food platters to accompany the sitting are available to order as well - think cured meats, olives and cheeses. Sounds delicious, right? P.S: check out this Segway tour offering from this forward-thinking farm, the two- hour option includes a complimentary wine tasting.
Price: Sessions will set you back between R35p/p and R90p/p.
Opening times and booking info: Spier’s tasting room, which sits on the banks of the Spier dam, is open daily from 10am - 4.30pm. A reservation is required for groups of eight or more.
R310 | Lynedoch Road | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 809 1143
Marianne Wine Estate
Things are done differently at Marianne Wine Estate. Given the farm’s French connections – it’s owned by Frenchman Christian Dauriac who also makes wine in the Bordeaux region – the winery adds a little à la française to the Cape Winelands. Most of its wines are made to improve with age and are released later than any South African wines, which means you can taste older wines than is generally possible in the Cape. Another thing that stands out at Marianne is how knowledgeable the wine tasting team is. It’s a wonderfully educational experience and, provided you’re not completely distracted by the incredible views from the large, chic tasting room, you’ll come away knowing a great deal more about wine than you did when you arrived. There are several tasting options available including a red wine and biltong pairing and a vertical tasting of at least six Marianne wines. You can also sign up for a highly informative and fun blending tour.
Price: Tastings start at R50p/p. Wine and biltong pairing costs R75p/p. The two-hour blending tour is R300, including a bottle of wine blended by and labelled for you.
Opening times and booking info: Open every day of the year from 10am - 7pm. We suggest you call in advance for larger goups or special occassions.
Valley Road on the R44 | Klapmuts | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 875 5040
La Motte Winery
You can channel your inner Dionysus and sip and swirl the winery’s acclaimed reds and white. La Motte also offers specialised tastings, like the Shiraz Comparative Tasting, which lets you explore and savour various Shiraz blends, style and vintages, as well as a Vinoteque Tasting, which comprises the estate’s older and current vintages so as to discover the evolution of its award-winning wines and to investigate the effects of bottle ageing and maturation. Furthermore, there’s a one-of-a-kind pairing that matches five bite-sized portions of haute cuisine with five of the winery’s highly rated reds and whites that is presented in a private room in the farm’s elegant tasting centre every Friday.
Price:Expect to pay between R50p/p and R200p/p depending on which tasting you opt for.
Opening times and booking info:Monday to Saturday, 9am - 5pm. The tasting room is closed on Sundays and all Christian holidays. Reservations for groups, themed tastings and cellar tours are essential.
(R45) Main Road | Franschhoek | +27(0)21 876 8820 | email@example.com
Avontuur Wine Estate
If you are on the hunt for speciality wine pairings then Avontuur has got you covered. Its monthly combos feature tantalising and scrumptious options like biltong, nougat and chocolate and wine pairings. Tastings take place in Avontuur’s gorgeous, newly renovated tasting room, which claims views of the farm’s paddocks, where some of South Africa’s champion race horses spend their days off the track.
Price: The monthly pairing only costs R50p/p (includes three varietals and pairing of the month).
Opening times and booking info:Booking is required.
R44 | Between Stellenbosch & Somerset West | Somerset West | +27(0)21 855 3450 | firstname.lastname@example.org
ROOT44 Market at Audacia Wines
Situated between the mountains and vineyards of Audacia’s wines, the ROOT44 market offers a unique wine tasting experience. The market offers something for everyone, from live music to gourmet food and refreshments including local craft beer, fresh juice, and coffee, oh and of course, your favourite Audacia red blends. The Audacia range offers a great selection of healthier alternative wines, such as the low kilojoule and low alcohol natural red wine, with an alcohol volume of only 7.5% as opposed to the usual 14%. ROOT44 caters to all preferences, with special consideration for the vegetarian craft market attendee, as well as meat options for the carnivore. What really sets ROOT44 apart is their park run, a free 5-km timed run. The park run is a global initiative that takes place every single Saturday, and regular participants are encouraged to volunteer their time to the cause at least thrice a year. In return, the volunteering park runner is rewarded with the maximum number of points towards the annual competition. ROOT44 offers a comfortable space for the entire family to enjoy the outdoors, and with their designated play areas for kids, you don’t have to bother finding a sitter while you get your wine tasting or Parkrunning on. The market is shaded by a marquee so come rain or shine, come and enjoy the festivities taking place at Audacia Wines.
Price: Entry to the market is free, but costs are involved in the purchase of any items at the various craft stalls.
Opening times and booking information: Every Saturday and Sunday from 10am - 4pm.
Audacia Wines | Corner of R44 & Annandale Road | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 881 3052 | email@example.com
Fairview Wine Estate
Wine and cheese! Need we say more? Fairview’s stunning tasting room is made up of a number of pods that facilitate a less pretentious and more social session. All of the tasting options include a range of Jersey milk and goat’s milk cheeses and between six and eight wines. Not to mention, there are dedicated tasting room hosts and guide to ensure you make the most of your visit.
Price: A super affordable option; prices range between R12p/p and R60p/p.
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room is open seven days a week (with the exception of Christmas and New Year’s Day) from 9am - 5pm. Bookings are required for groups of 10 or more guests.
Suid-Agter Paarl Road | Paarl | +27(0)21 863 2450 | firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s better than a wine and cheese pairing? If your answer was something along the lines of a biltong, droëwors and vino combination, then look no further than Stellenbosch Hills. The estate partners six of its premium wines with a selection of cured and dried meat and sausage. For example, a springbok biltong and Stellenbosch Hills 1707 Reserve Whitecombo anda kudu droëwors Stellenbosch Hills Cabernet Sauvignon serving form part of the six-course pairing. Apart from the Biltong & Droëwors Adventure, the winery also offers a straightforward tasting session where you can select a maximum of five wines.
Price: The meaty option costs R40p/p while the regular session will set you back a measly R15p/p. Do note: should you choose to purchase a bottle of vino after the tasting, the fees will be waived.
Opening times: Tastings are on the go from Monday - Friday between 8am - 5pm and on Saturday from 10am - 3pm
R310 | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 881 2828/9 | email@example.com
De Grendel Wine Farm
Sip and savour top-notch reds and white on the farm’s sprawling veranda, which boasts gorgeous views of the Atlantic Ocean and the surrounding vineyards. In terms of the actual tasting, you have the option of sampling the full range of De Grendel vino or any three varietals that are available that day. Furthermore, cheese and charcuterie platters are available to elevate your already fantastic wine tasting experience. Not to mention, De Grendel is roughly 15 minutes away from Cape Town CBD.
Price:Offering great value for your hard-earned cash, tastings will only set you back between R20p/p and R50p/p.
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room is open every day of the week: Monday - Saturday: 9am - 7pm; Sunday: 10am - 4pm. Booking is essential for groups of eight or more.
Plattekloof Road | Durbanville | +27(0)21 558 6280
Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards
This modern tasting room, which effortlessly blends elements of wood, glass and chrome, is where you can indulge in an affordable wine tasting experience. In terms of the elixir that you will be sampling, well you get to choose any five wines from the estate’s Family Collection, Classic or Lookout ranges. Side note: on weekends, the winery also serves a colourful range of wine cocktails made specifically to enhance and complement the natural flavours of 10 of its vintages. Leopard's Leap Family Vineyards options include a cranberry Rosé Cosmopolitan, a pineapple-based Sauvignon Blanc Cooler and a cinnamon-tinged Chardonnay Margarita.
Price: A wine tasting session costs just R25p/p (R30 p/p for the tutored group option).
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room welcomes visitors: Tuesday - Saturday: 9am - 5pm - Sunday: 11am - 5pm. The tasting room is closed on all Christian religious holidays.
R45 Main Road | Franschhoek Valley | +27(0)21 876 8002
To say that there is a wine pairing for everyone at this heavenly estate would be somewhat of an understatement. From gourmet canapés served with a specially curated selection of wines and a vino and chocolate pairing to a non-alcoholic tea and snacks combo and secret wine and food pairing, Creation Wines certainly caters for all. Not to mention, there is a specialised kids’ offering that features juices, flavoured milks and a selection of tasty treats.
Price:With prices ranging from R75p/p to R250p/p, wine tasting at Creation Wines is a little pricey, but totally worth your hard-earned pennies. Do note: the price includes the food pairings.
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room is open daily: 10am - 5pm. However, food and wine pairing run until 4pm daily.
Hemel-en-Aarde Road | Hermanus | +27(0)28 212 1107
Doolhof Wine Estate
The sip–and-swirl sessions at this stunning estate, which is nestled in the Bovlei Valley, take place in the farm’s original 19th-century wagon house, which has been transformed into a classy tasting room. Here you can channel your inner wine connoisseur and indulge in any five of Doolhof’s award-winning varietals - think rich Bordeaux blends, crisp Chardonnays and refreshing Chenin Blancs. What’s more, if you work up a bit of an appetite during your session, you can order a light lunch that will be prepared by the estate’s chef. Options include gourmet sandwiches, salads, pastas and a “wrap of the day”.
Price: A wine tasting session at Doolhoof costs just R20p/p for five vinos, and pensioners get to indulge for FREE on Wednesdays. This fee is waived if you purchase any bottle(s) over R100. The light lunches range from R50 to R100.
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room is open every day of the week including public holidays: Monday - Saturday: 10am - 5pm; Sunday: 10am - 4pm. Lunch; Tuesday - Sunday: 11am - 3pm. Reservations should be made 24 hours in advance for groups of six and more.
Bovlei Road | Wellington | +27(0)21 873 6911 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Haute Cabrière Wine Estate
If you’re looking for a, shall we say, 'dramatic' wine tasting session, then look no further than Haute Cabrière’s Cellar Master’s Tour. Every Saturday at 11am, owner and founder Achim von Arnim and his son, Cellar Master and Production Director Takuan, will treat you to the ultimate in wine theatre in the auditorium within the Pinot Noir barrel maturation cellar. More specifically, the pair will regale you with stories of the estate’s history and wine philosophy in the Haute Cabrière intimate vault while allowing guests to taste some of the estate’s finest reds and whites in their natural habitat. As for the wine, well you will get to sample the estate’s signature Pierre Jourdan Cap Classique range as well as other exquisite still wines. Oh, and Achim and Takuan use a French cavalry sabre to lop the tops off of the bottles! How cool? NOTE: The award-winning vino estate also has an array of other wine tasting and (public and private) cellar tour on offer.
Price: The tour costs R70p/p
Opening times and booking info: Saturday from 11am. Although bookings are not necessary, for larger groups it is recommended.
Lambrechts Road | Franschhoek | +27(0)21 876 8500 | reservations@cabrier
The Waterford Estate which is nestled in the slice-of-heaven Blaauwklippen Valley, offers a number of delectable wine tastings. For example, there is the ever-popular Wine & Chocolate Experience that, as the name suggests, features a series of curated dark and milk chocolate paired with a Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and a Heatherleigh Noble Late Harvest. Furthermore, there is the adventurous Wine Drive Safari option, which will take you on a game drive-type tour of the biodiverse estate followed by a sipping session in one of the surrounding vineyards. How’s that for a unique wine tasting experience close to Cape Town?
Price: A standard session will cost R45p/p, the chocolate and wine pairing will set you back R50, and the sip-and-swirl safari is priced at R550p/p.
Opening times and booking info: Waterford tastings sessions can be enjoyed: Monday - Friday: 9am - 5pm; Saturday: 10am - 5pm. Bookings are necessary.
Blaauwklippen Road |Helderberg | Stellenbosch | +27(0)221 880 5300
Under Oaks Farm in Paarl
If your palate is craving boutique-style wines that are made from premium grapes, then you will want to make a short trip (roughly 50 minutes from Cape Town CBD) to the Under Oaks Farm. The winery’s tasting list features Michelangelo award- winning varietals such as Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, Shiraz Reserve and Pinotage Reserve. What’s more, there is the option to pair these wines with either biltong and nuts or velvety chocolate.
Price: A standard tasting (four wines) costs R45p/p and the above-mentioned combos (five wines each) cost R50p/p each.
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room is open: Tuesday: 12pm - 4pm; Wednesday - Sunday: 11am - 4pm.
Northern Paarl | Paarl | +27(0)21 869 8045
Kleine Zalze Winery
More Winelands destination than winery, the Kleine Zalze Winery boasts sprawling lawns, an acclaimed restaurant and of course, a classy tasting room. The winery keeps things simple when it comes to sampling sessions with either a three- or five-wine option. Of course, the vino itself is far from simple: there’s a full-bodied Sauvignon Blanc with floral and herbaceous notes; a Shiraz with powerful blackcurrant, plum and wild spice flavours; a Chenin Blanc that comprise guava, litchi and citrus aromas and many more on offer.
Price: A trio of wines will cost a mere R15p/p, while an additional two will set you back R25p/p.
Opening times and booking info: The tasting room is open all week: Monday - Saturday: 9am - 5:30pm; Sunday: 11am - 5.30pm.
R44 | Strand Road | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 880 0717
De Oude Drostdy in Tulbagh
Known as the ‘spiritual home’ of Drostdy-Hof Wines, De Oude Drostdy, which was built in 1804, is certainly a unique venue for a wine tasting experience. Why? Well, the old manor house also doubles up as a museum that features a collection of early Cape furniture and household items. The tasting session takes place in the old slave quarters where you will be surrounded by candlelight and wine barrels, and you can look forward to sipping on reds, whites and sherries from Drostdy-Hof.
Price: For just R20 you will get to experience the wines and stroll around the museum.
Opening times and booking info: You can drop in for a sampling session on: Monday - Friday:10am - 5pm; Saturday: 10am - 2pm.
Winterhoek Road | Tulbagh | email@example.com | +27 (0) 23 230 0203
The Whale, Wine and Wors Tour by Wine Flies
This unique day trip offering will whisk you off to (re)discover a number of charming spots in the Cape Winelands. Not only will you get to do some whale watching in Hermanus and indulge in a boerewors and cider pairing in Grabouw, but you will also get to stop over at the family-owned Middelvlei Wine Farm to sample some top-quality reds and whites and take a cellar tour. Not to mention, you will also make a pit stop at the Wildekrans Boutique Wine Estate where you will get to know some of the estate’s award-winning wines and Grappa.
Price: The Whale, Wine and Wors tour will set you back just R700 per person, and this includes all tastings, pairings and lunch.
Opening times and booking info: Tours run every Tuesday and Thursday (August to December) from 7.30am to 6pm.
+27 (0) 21 462 8011 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Montpellier in Tulbagh
According to the estate’s website, “Bottled poetry” is what you can look forward to when you imbibe its lauded range of wines. More specifically, you will get to choose from any of Montepellier’s five whites, six reds, two MCCs and one port to sample. Sounds rather amazing, if we do say so ourselves. Not to mention, you can sip and swirl in the historic Manor House or on the estate’s gorgeous lawns under dappled shade from the surrounding oak trees.
Price: A session costs a mere R25p/p, but the fee is waived if you purchase a bottle.
Opening times and booking info: The Manor House welcomes guests for tastings; Monday - Friday: 9am - 5pm, and on Saturday, Sunday and public holidays from 10am - 3pm. Booking is necessary for large groups.
Van Der Stel Street | Tulbagh | email@example.com | +27(0)23 230 0656
With an outdoor wooden deck and a generous fireplace, Mulderbosch’s tasting room can facilitate tastings in both the warmer and colder months. But what makes a session at the vineyard truly special is that you can pair its full range of wines (up to five per session) with delicious, thin-based, wood-fired pizzas. Our recommendation? The biltong, peppadew and avo option! Not to mention, there is also the option to customise your pizza and vino pairing (be sure to call the tasting room for more info). Of course, if you are just in the mood for a nibble, you can opt for a charcuterie or cheese boards.
Price: A standard tasting for five wines costs R50p/p. The tasty pizzas ring in at R85 each and a platter will set you back R130.
Opening times and booking info: Mulderbosch’s gorgeous tasting room is open: Tuesday - Sunday: 10am - 6pm (same times apply to public holidays with the exception of Christmas, Easter Friday and New Year’s Day). Bookings are essentials, but do note that the tasting room does not make reservations for groups larger than 12 people.
Polkadraai Road | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 881 8149 | firstname.lastname@example.org
The Steenberg Estate
On the lookout for a wide range of wine tasting experiences set in a luxurious surrounding? Well, search no more! The Steenberg Estate offers a range of sipping session options: there’s the Classic option, where you can select any five wines from a list that includes an Echo Red Blend, a Klein Steenberg Cabernet Sauvignon and a Klein Steenberg Rosé; and then there’s the popular cheese and wine pairing tutored option that comprises Steenberg Sauvignon Blanc and Chevin, Semillon and 12-month matured Gruyère and Shiraz and gorgonzola combos (pre-booking is essential). Not to mention, you can also indulge in the Flagship tasting, which features the estate’s Ultra Premium Range, or the Food and Wine option, which sees four pre-selected vinos being served alongside four mouth-watering nibbles courtesy of Steenberg’s on-site bistro, Sixteen82 (pre-booking is essential).
Price: The offerings range in price from R20p/p to R200p/p.
Opening times and booking info: The farm is open for tasting: Monday - Sunday: 10m - 6pm (including public holidays – except for Christmas Day and Good Friday)
Steenberg Road | Tokai | +27 (0)21 713 2211 | email@example.com
Dornier Wine Estate
Not only does this winery offer the usual sip and swirl session and food and wine pairing, but also a vino and homemade Flammkuchen combo. The latter-mentioned sees Dornier’s Premiun Range, Donatus, being served alongside a pizza-like bread that is covered in crème fraîche, thinly sliced onions and lardons. So, it basically covers a pizza, cheese and wine tasting! The estate’s Donatus range is made up of a white varietal that has aromas of peach and pear, and a red option that boasts hints blackcurrant, mulberry and sweet tobacco. The tasting requires a minimum of four people.
Price: The wine and Flammkuchen tasting rings in at R119 p/p.
Opening times and booking info: Dornier’s tasting room welcomes guests daily; 10am - 5pm; though, the Flammkuchen tasting and the food and wine pairing are only available between Monday - Friday: 10am - 7pm. Booking for any of the sessions is essential.
Blaauwklippen Road | Stellenbosch | +27(0)21 880 0557
You can't go wrong with the beauitful Four Cousins wine farm in Robertson. Think about the sweetness of a sweetie pie, the chewy yet delicious taste of a toffee square and the all round awesomeness of a powdered piece of nougat - is your mouth salivating yet? Ours most certainly is and we haven’t even mentioned the best part…the alcohol of course! This, Scottish Cousin Pairing includes a new addition to the Four Cousins Family as it is a range of distinguished whiskies, which are perfect even for an unrefined whisky palate like ours.
Robertson | Cape Town
Keen to to learn more about the fine art of wine tasting? Check out our step-by-step guide.
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