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The Most Unique Wine Tasting Experiences in the Cape
published on:

Move over, Gin and Craft Beer! Wine is making the mother of all comebacks!

Living in the Cape, wine tastings are, let’s be frank, a dime a dozen. But, if, like us, you’re looking for a unique experience – something a little different, without the pomp and snobbery – read on! We’ve rounded up a selection of spot-hitting experiences, using #WineSnobberyMustFall as our benchmark.

So, let’s leave the thoughtful nodding, expert swirling, and careful smelling to the connoisseurs – and raise our glasses to having some fun with fermented grapes.

Forgotten Secrets And Timeless Tastings: Muratie Wine Estate

Almost as old as time itself, this Stellenbosch estate (founded in 1685) captures the very essence of the Cape’s history inside its every nook and cranny. Everything from the buildings, to the artefacts and trees, remember the past, even as they look hopefully towards the future…
Why you’ll love it If you like cobwebs and history, then you’ll love experiencing Muratie’s tastings in the historic locations where time has seemingly stood still. These include the cobwebbed Tasting Room (complete with old paintings and stained glass); the beautifully maintained, old-styled George Paul Canitz room (which honours famous Stellenbosch painter and farm owner); or amid the cellar’s weathered-looking, old wine tanks. 
Here, you really will taste (and feel) a bygone era,complemented by Muratie’s timeless passion and careful winemaking approaches – which, in many respects, still take their cue from the old wine ways.
Oh, and aside from the standard and premium wine tastings, there’s also a decadent chocolate and wine pairing. 
Cost R35 (Standard Tasting, includes 5 wines)
R60 (Premium Tasting)
R50 (Port and Chocolate Pairing; returning from June 2017)
Groups by appointment only
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm
Good to know Enjoy traditional breakfasts and lunches at the Muratie Farm Kitchen, from Wednesday to Sunday, as well as MTB and trail running on the estate.
Contact 021 865 2330, info@muratie.co.za
Where to find it Knorhoek Road/R44, Koelenhof, Stellenbosch

Proudly South African Boerebraai And Wine: Middelvlei Wine Estate

Away from the buzz of the historic university town, this Momberg family estate in Stellenbosch offers good wine, wholesome food and a slice of the slow country life in one easy outing. 
They’re also big on family and South African tradition (we love the Boerebraai-themed food offerings), so this is definitely the place to go with old friends and family.
Why you’ll love it If, like us,  you love a braai, you will love their Boerebraai Tapas and Wine Pairing. Expect droolicious potbrood and snoek pâté (with Middelvlei Chardonnay), Biltong and Caramelised-onion paptertjie (with Middelvlei Rooster Merlot) or Cocktail Boerewors Sosatie (with Middelvlei Pinotage).
And when you’re done, why not try your hand at wine blending? There are few things cooler than tasting and blending your own vino! (For an additional cost, you can bottle, cork and take it home with you.)
Cost R80 (Boerebraai Tapas and Wine Pairing)
R198 (Boerebraai Lunch; booking is essential; dinner option available for groups of 35 or more)
R150 (Wine Blending Experience; includes cellar tour, potbrood and glass of pinotage Merlot; booking is essential) 
R120 extra (to take home the bottle of your own blended wine)
Opening times Boerebraai Tapas and Wine: Monday – Sunday, 11.30am – 3pm
Wine Blending Experience: Tuesday, Thursday & the last Saturday of the month, 11am – 1.30pm (booking is essential)
Boerebraai: Monday – Sunday, 12pm – 3pm (venue closes at 4.30pm)
Good to know Kids can enjoy rambling around outside on the spacious grounds, feeding farm animals, riding tractors, tucking into their own special kiddies’ snack box, or even braaing their own stokbrood!
Contact 021 883 2565, info@middelvlei.co.za
Where to find it Flamingo Street, Stellenbosch

Artisanal Salt Tastings In The Mountain: Die Bergkelder Wine Centre

Charming Die Bergkelder is not only home to award-winning Fleur du Cap wines; it also has a literal mountain cellar… Tucked away under the historic Papegaaiberg mountain, this “cellar in the mountain” lies alongside the Plankenburg River, flanked by lush gardens. (Interestingly Papegaaiberg is named for the clay pigeons shot  to commemorate Governor Simon van der Stel’s birthday in the late 1700s.)
Why you’ll love it We think it’s pretty cool that this is the only underground bottle-maturation cellar of its kind in the entire Southern Hemisphere. Add rich Cape history, cool tastings and a pretty epic, double-cellar tour, and it becomes even cooler! 
Once inside, the tasting takes place amid lit alcoves before you walk down a 500 000-bottle-flanked passage that reveals the barrel cellar, where carved casks remember various important Cape wine landmarks and events. You’ll then return past the bottling plant – capable of bottling up to 10 000 bottles per hour. 
And let’s not forget the unusual Fleur du Cap wine and artisanal salt pairings, which combine naturally crafted wines with handmade, salted delicacies.
Cost R60 (hour-long guided Wine Tour and 5-wine tasting; limited to 25 people per group. Bigger groups can be arranged by prior booking.)
R95 (Fleur du Cap Wine and Salt Pairings; prior booking is essential.)
Opening times Fleur du Cap Wine and Salt Pairings: Monday – Saturday, 9am – 4.30pm 
Wine Tour: Monday – Friday, 10am, 11am, 2pm and 3pm; Saturday, 10am, 11am and 12pm
Contact Die Bergkelder Wine Centre: 021 809 8025, info@bergkelder.co.za
Wine Tour: kretief@distell.co.za, 021 809 8025
Fleur du Cap Wine and Salt Pairings: 021 809 8025, nferreira@distell.co.za
Where to find it Die Bergkelder Wine Centre, George Blake Street, Stellenbosch

Vintage Wines And Views For Days: Jordan Wine Estate

Since 1993, owners Gary and Kathy Jordan have been making world-class wines on this picturesque estate. The vineyards enjoy the perfect synergy between soul and soil because they’re planted on differing altitudes (160 – 410 metres above sea level), close to both the Indian and Atlantic Oceans.
Why you’ll love it Not only is the estate unique by nature’s design; it also has a history dating back some 300 years. First up, visitors can enjoy the 360° Tasting Experience: a two-hour trip of safari-style game viewing, offering spectacular views of False and Table Bays, while you taste a selection of sustainable wines, before enjoying a cellar tour (with an additional tasting either in the barrel cellar or out on the terrace).
If you prefer to keep things strictly indoors, opt for the Vinoteque Tasting, which includes a tour of the underground barrel cellar (so wear sensible closed shoes!) and a tasting of six wines: four vintages and two from their current selection. 
Cost R200 (360° Tasting Experience) 
Book online
R400 (Cellar Tour & Vinoteque Tasting)
Book online 
Opening times
360° Tasting Experience: Monday – Sunday, 10am–4pm
Cellar Tour & Vinoteque Tasting: Monday – Sunday, 9.30am – 10.30am
Contact 021 881 3441,  sales@jordanwines.com
Where to find it Stellenbosch Kloof Road, Stellenbosch

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Tel: +27.218832565   Fax: +27.218839546   Email: info@middelvlei.co.za  
Flamingo Street, P.O. Box 66 , Stellenbosch, 7599, South Africa

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