Welcome to the Western Cape Wineries - a kiwi's opinion blog

I originally set up this blog to help foreigners have an enjoyable experience when visiting the western cape wineries in South Africa.

I realised that it is very difficult for a tourist to choose where to go and which wineries to visit, when you have 600+ wine producers to choose from.

When I first moved to SA December 2010, my palate struggled to adjust to SA wine, b
ut after living here for a while and after visiting over 100+ wine estates, I have found many wines which I really like and can highly recommend.

Admittingly, when you come from another country it is hard not to compare the wine in SA to what you are used to back home. However, once you realise they are not the same (they have their own characteristics due to the different soil, climate etc) and appreciate their wines for being SA wines, it will improve your opinion and experience of the wines immediately.

If you are staying in SA for a while, don't dispair, your palate will change, and you will soon find yourself liking SA wine over your home countries wine!!

I hope my blog will help wine lovers have an enjoyable wine experience while in SA.

Please note: I am not a wine connoisseur. The comments I write about the wine is mostly for my own benefit of having them on record.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Wacky Wine Weekend 2011

Well, I have now been to my first Robertson Wacky Wine Weekend and it was pretty good and I am glad that I went!!!

We started at Rooiburg where there were quite a lot of people trying the wines, but with people taking a tasting and moving to the back of the queue before getting their next tasting, it worked out very nicely. The wine was great here. I liked the SB, the dry Rose, semi sweet rose, and the red muscadel. All were very reasonably priced!!!
After this winery we went to Graham Beck. This was one of my favourites of the day. ALL their wine was available to taste on the day, it was great!! The marque/tent they had set up was nicely fitted with bar tables, normal dining tables, and couches. There was food for sale, wine at very reasonable prices and the live music changed every hour, it was fab!!!

Next we went to Springfield. The view of the dam/lake is stunning!!! The winery itself is also very nice!! I really look forward to going again on a day when its sunny and we can enjoy sitting outside drinking wine with views like this:
In general, the wine here was ok. However, I thoroughly enjoyed the Life from Stone Sauvignon Blanc. The views from the tasting room are gorgeous, and the winery itself, is very nice.
After Springfield, we went to De Wetshof. This was a good choice because there were not many people there, yet the atmosphere was nice, the wine was good and the food selection was very nice!!

We then made our way to Van Loveran. This was also a favourite for the day!! The wines in general are ok, but three caught my attention. I liked the SB, the red muscadel and the African Java Pinotage.

I loved the tropical feeling you get when walking through the trees, and I loved the band they had playing at the time we got there. I loved the fact you could see the vineyards from the marque/tent. It was a great vibe there!!

Next we went to Viljoensdrift. We got there after 5pm so missed the chance for a tasting.
However, with the time of day, the sun was setting very nicely which left us with this amazing view of the river beside Viljeonsdrift!!
We then headed to Arabella for the evening event. The rugby was on, the place was crowded. Wine was nice!! Had a bottle of the SB and the Shiraz, both were great!!! The music was good and there was a place to dance also. Shame that the weather was not so great on the day, as it made the place a lot more crowded under the tent and also made for muddy ground. But, it was all worth it :-)
On the Sunday of the Wacky Wines Weekend we went and visited several more wineries. It was definitely a lot quieter on the Sunday. We first went to Rietvallei:

This is a beautiful winery and was set up so nicely for the weekend. I did not find the wine so great here, and I tried them all, in case one would stand out. But unfortunately none of them did.

We went on to Excelsior next. The wines were very nice, it was cool that they allowed guests to blend their own wines, and the setting here is also very nice.

There were stalls here, selling cheese, samosa, sushi etc. We all enjoyed the samosas here, and LOVED the cheese that was sold at one of the stalls. I bought 1 gouda and 1 italian mix herb cheese, it was SOOO good!! I can't wait to have the chance to buy that cheese again.

Next we went to Zandvliet. The views on the way there were nice and rustic.
This winery was interestingly set up for the wine tasting. The wine was split amongst the stables. I am not sure if it is always like this or only for wacky wines, but I thought it was a good idea. The wine here was quite nice, but again, nothing jumped out at me that made me want to buy any.

Last but not least, we finished at Rusticus. We went there because we were looking for something to eat and have our last tasting. 
It turned out that the guy who was pouring the wine at Rusticus was the same guy (Douglas) who served me at Steenberg, so I was pleasantly surprised, as its always great to have someone who knows their wine!! The food was ok, but the wines were very nice. I especially liked the Odyssey.
Oh, we also went back to Rooiburg on our way back home to pick up some more wine and try more of the wines which we didn't get to try the day before :-) I am a fan of the Rooiburg wines, great value for money!!!

So all in all, it was a very nice weekend and I look forward to next years Wacky Wine Weekend :-)


  1. At TASTE (2012) I tried De Wetshof wines and I really liked the Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2011 at R35 a bottle. I bought one bottle while at the event, I drank it last night at a friend’s place, while we were having a braai, and it was perfect for the occassion. I highly recommend this wine!!

  2. The other day I had a bottle of the Wild Yeast Chardonnay and was really impressed so the other day when I was at Delish in Heidelberg, I decided to buy a bottle of the two Sauvignon blancs and their Pinot Noir. I will create a post specifically for the tasting notes.