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.

Saturday, 15 October 2011


A few weeks ago on Saturday the 1st of October I went to Middlevlei for a TSIBA charity running event. Sure I didn’t run, but I still contributed to the charity and walked the course.

I unfortunately didn't have my camera on the day so don't have any photos of the winery. I have used some of the photos from the Middelvlei website. You can check out more photos on http://www.middelvlei.co.za.

This running event is held monthly to help raise money for a company called TSIBA. Money is raised to fund less fortunate people through an education in business, helping them to further them self in life. You can find out more on http://www.tsiba.org.za/

Each month, the event is held at a different winery. You turn up at the chosen winery about 7am as the run starts about 7.30am. As this is on a Saturday, you will need a slightly early night on Friday. It costs R60 to attend this event. The run at Middlevlei was 6.5km or you could do it twice and run 13km. As our friend is a running buff, he did the 13km and we walked the 6.5km and it worked out perfect as we crossed the finish line at the same time. What a way to start the day and we helped raise money for a good cause!!

Once you finish your run or walk, you get to have a free wine tasting in the tasting room. The tasting room reminds me of a cabin you would see when hiking/camping in NZ, so it has a rugged feeling to it, but in a nice way. There is a lovely fireplace in the room which you can sit around. There were wooden tables inside and outside. A tasting normally costs R15 at Middlevlei.

I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed the Chardonnay 2011 at this winery. It is smooth, easy drinking, not wooded and nicely balanced. It sells for R54 a bottle so I bought two bottles, which I look forward to opening in the next month or two. The other wine I liked was the Free Run Pinotage 2010. It sells for R87, is slightly dry and has a great fruity flavour. They also have a Pinotage/Merlot 2009 for R65 and a Shiraz 2009 for R96. The service at this winery was fantastic, and even though it was really busy, the lady working there still made the effort to tell me information about the wine. 

At Middlevlei they also had a Braai going where we could order Boerwors or Braaibroodjies. They were delicious!!! Some of the best Braaibroodjies I have tried in South Africa. For those who don't know what a Braaibroodjie is, it's a toasted sandwich done on the Braai. It is so much better than a toasted sandwich though!! They are usually filled with onion, tomato and cheese.

After we had all rested, done a wine tasting and had some food, there was a prize giving. There were prizes handed out for 1st, 2nd and 3rd placed winners, and then many prizes for spot prizes.
This is a nice wine farm to visit and worth checking out. I also recommend attending this charity event, as it's a nice way to start the day, you get to visit a new wine farm every month and you get to do a tasting.

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