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Restaurants with fireplaces in the Cape Winelands
Wine and dine alongside a cosy, crackling hearth
Wine and dine alongside a cosy, crackling hearth
Spectacular scenery, world-class wines, and rich gourmet comfort food are just some of the offerings you can expect from Cape Town’s wide selection of winelands eateries. As if such fine features are not enticing enough, these spots are made all the more charming during the relentless winter rains by splendid glowing hearths and roaring fires. Regardless of taste or type, there is little more alluring than the thought of huddling in a cosy interior while watching bitter winds sweep through vast vineyards.
To help turn the above from a mere wintry, office-bound daydream into an accessible option, we’ve put together a list of our favourite winelands restaurants with fireplaces. Head out to one of these spots in Stellenbosch, Wellington, Paarl or Franschhoek for a truly toasty wine and dine experience.
Red Leaf Restaurant
Situated on the breathtaking Beyerskloof Wine Estate in Stellenbosch, Red Leaf Restaurant offers patrons the chance to dine on delicious fare and sip on award-winning wines while soaking up spectacular vistas of vineyards and rolling hills. Contemporary but intimate, the eatery serves rich, flavourful specialities, including the renowned Pinotage burger, slow-cooked pork belly, lamb rack and a hearty seafood paella. Diners can enjoy these next to two blazing hearths on the enclosed wooden deck or huddled alongside a third fireplace in the restaurant’s indoor space. All three fireplaces, we’re assured, burn vigorously from open to close.
Opening times: Tuesday – Friday: 9am - 3:30pm; Saturday: 11am - 3pm.
Beyerskloof Wine Farm | R304 | Koelenhof | Stellenbosch | +27 (0)21 865 2685
Previously Hazendal Wine Estate’s original 17th century cellar, this grand restaurant is rich with both heritage – a colonial map appears across its ceiling, for instance – and welcoming warmth. Although guests can take lunch al fresco, the large roaring fireplace, which makes for quite a feature in the tasting centre, draws crowds in winter. During the nippy months, the eatery’s layout is specifically altered to arrange six restaurant tables around this circular hearth so diners can bathe in the blissful heat. The ideal spot for warm food and wine pairing, Hermitage offers fresh fare that blends Mediterranean flavours with South African flair.
Opening times: Tuesday – Sunday: 9am - 11am (breakfast); 12pm - 3pm (lunch)
Bottelary Road | Bottelary Ward | Stellenbosch | +27 (0)21 903 5035
Dornier Bodega Restaurant
This culinary gem, housed in an old barn on Dornier Wine Estate in the Stellenbosch mountains, promises pastoral charm and fresh farm-style cuisine. Bodega’s selection of uncomplicated, seasonal dishes, all made from locally-sourced ingredients, was inspired by the Dornier range of wines and is designed specifically to complement these blends. During winter, guests can enjoy either vegetarian or meaty two- or three-course meals at special prices. Such offerings are all the more enjoyable in light of the fire that blazes in the restaurant’s lively interior.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 12pm - 5pm. (closed Tuesdays)
Dornier Wine Estate | Blaauwklippen Road | Stellenbosch | +27 (0)21 880 0557
Note: Dornier Bodega will be closed for maintenance from 11 June to 6 July 2012
Close partner of Bosman Family Vineyards, this whimsical eatery on Kleinevalleij Estate in Wellington is an especially unique and festive spot to satiate an appetite for both fancy fare– such as crayfish-stuffed calamari or bacon-wrapped quail - and simple, local foods. Alive with creativity, Festa’s quirky decor and bold colour scheme are complemented by a warming wood-fired pizza oven and an open fire in the lounge area, making the eatery a great place to go to fend off freezing weather.
Opening times: Wednesday – Friday: 9am - 4pm; 7pm - 10pm; Saturday – Sunday: 9am - 4pm.
Kleinevalleij Estate | R301 | Wellington | +27 (0)21 873 0075
This arresting 120-hectare estate in Stellenbosch features wide stretches of lawn, old citrus orchards, beds of lavender and a Tuscan-style villa that boasts a beautiful stone courtyard. Although there is no formal restaurant on site, the Waterford tasting room specialises in pairing their fine wines with a selection of handcrafted dark and milk chocolates. This heavenly combination of rich cocoa and sweet and spicy varietals, enjoyed next to a glowing fire in the lounge, make chilly winter days almost desirable.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 9am - 5pm; Saturday: 10am - 5pm.
Blaauwklippen Road | Helderberg | Stellenbosch | +27 (0)21 880 0496
Avontuur Estate Restaurant
Indulge your senses with Avontuur Restaurant’s hearty breakfast selection or a lunch menu that bursts with country flavour. Options for the health-conscious include light snacks, salads, sandwiches and quiches. If the under-floor heating isn’t warming enough, guests can also laze by a roaring open fire while tucking into the eatery’s delectable desserts.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 9am - 5pm; Wednesday and Friday: 5pm - 10:30pm
R44 | Between Stellenbosch & Somerset West | Somerset West | Western Cape |+27 (0)21 855 4296
Visit this charming restaurant, set in a country garden on the Backsberg wine farm, for their roaring fire, local homemade food, selection of seasonal light snacks, and impressive range of wines. During winter, go on a Sunday for their tender lamb on a spit, live acoustic music and delicious three-course set menu. Backsberg Restaurant’s á la carte menu is available Mondays through Saturdays and all lunch bookings include a complimentary wine tasting session.
Opening Times: Monday – Sunday: 9:30am - 4pm.
Backsberg Estate | Franschhoek | Western Cape |+27 (0) 21 875 5952
96 Winery Road
Cuddle up next to one of the three fireplaces at this popular winelands restaurant and enjoy a view of the vineyards and the Helderberg mountains. A well-loved haunt for local wine connoisseurs, the restaurant boasts over 320 different vintages. A firm favourite on the winter menu is the Duck and Cherry Pie, made for warming from the inside out.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 12pm - 4pm; Monday – Saturday: 6:30pm - 10pm.
Winery Road | Zandberg Farm | Somerset West | Western Cape |+27 (0)21 842 2020
Allora Ristorante Classico (Franschhoek)
Nestled in the food and wine capital of the Cape, this relaxed restaurant was designed to give the feel of a traditional Italian village, with the focal points being the central fountain, the mosaic wood-burning ovens and the two well-positioned fireplaces. Rustic but refined, Allora’s menu options allow for a quick, light meal or a more impressive dinner of meat, seafood, poultry, pasta or thin-based pizza.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 12pm - 10pm; Saturday – Sunday: 12pm - 11pm.
55 Main Road | Franschhoek | Western Cape |+27 (0)21 876 4375/6
Country Kitchen (Mont Rochelle)
Visit the Country Kitchen for casual dining by the fire and indulge in their Mediterranean-inspired dishes. Based in the wine tasting area of Mont Rochelle Vineyards, the restaurant offers samplings at the table – so, if a food and wine pairing is appealing, let them know beforehand for a little on-site tuition.
Opening times: Monday – Tuesday: 10am - 9pm; Wednesday – Sunday: 10am - 7pm.
Mont Rochelle | Dassenberg Road | Franschhoek |Western Cape |+ 27 (0)21 876 2770
Glen Carlou Restaurant
Take a trip to the heart of the Paarl Valley and enjoy the panoramic vineyard views from this charming restaurant, located on the Glen Carlou Wine Estate. The beautiful interior, roaring fire and locally- and internationally-flavoured cuisine will surely make up for any chilly weather outside. Plus, the venue is entirely wheelchair friendly, a reflection of their high service standards.
Opening times: Monday –Sunday: 11am - 3pm; Wine tasting: Monday – Friday: 8:30am - 5pm; Saturday – Sunday: 10am - 4pm.
Glen Carlou Estate | Simondium Road | Klapmuts | Western Cape | +27 (0)21 875 5528
Delaire Graff Restaurant
Warm up at Delaire Graff Restaurant, based at the luxury estate on the periphery of the Helshoogte Pass, and take in powerful pieces of local art while you’re at it – the striking Kentridge portrait that hangs above the large fireplace is just one work in their diverse collection. Boasting a variety of innovative, well-presented pairings, the menu offers approachable ‘bistro-chic’ cuisine full with fresh, robust flavours, and an extensive list of fine wines.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 12pm – 2:30pm; Wednesday – Saturday: 6:30pm – 9pm. Delaire Graff Estate | Stellenbosch | Western Cape | +27 (0)21 885 8160
Note: Delaire Graff Restaurant is closed for renovations until 23 June 2012; during this time visitors are encouraged to book at the estate’s Indochine restaurant, a fine dining eatery that offers Asian-inspired fare and also boasts a big fireplace.
This earthy, sophisticated eatery on Waterkloof Wine Farm is home to a grand designer fireplace that, as a striking centrepiece, provides an elegant glow and welcomed warmth in winter. Guests can settle down into the black leather chairs that surround this hearth and warm up with a glass of wine before dining on gourmet comfort foods in the open-plan glass eatery. As a backdrop to Waterkloof Restaurant’s range of fine offerings, there are spectacular views of vines, mountains and the stunning False Bay stretch.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 12pm - 2pm; 7pm - 8:30pm; Sunday: 12pm - 2pm.
Waterkloof Estate | Sir Lowry’s Pass Road | Somerset West | Western Cape | +27 (0)21 858 1292
Note: The restaurant at Waterkloof has closed their doors until 4 July 2012.
If you’re searching for a spot a little closer to home, have a look at our listing of restaurants with fireplaces in central Cape Town.