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, 27 October 2012


We had lunch at Harvest Restaurant at Laborie. We booked a table outside and thoroughly enjoyed our lunch. My friend had been saying really good things about Harvest, so we finally ate there.

The food, service and ambiance was all very good here. It helped that the weather was just perfect also :-)

I had duck, my boyfriend and a friend had chicken with risotto and another friend had a sandwich. We were all so happy with our food. This restaurant has been consistently good each time our friends eat here, so you can safely choose this restaurant when you are in need of a lunch in Paarl!!

My boyfriend and I finished with a nice apple tart dessert.

After lunch, we went for a wine tasting at the Laborie tasting room. We were able to sit outside. The service was very good, which surprised us considering a big group had just walked in when we did. Even with the amount of people tasting wine at the same time, they worked professionally and the service was good.

I did a chocolate and wine pairing (R35), and then did a wine tasting on top of that (R20 for 5 wines). The chocolate and wine pairing is really well done, but the chocolate really changes the flavour of the wine. The first wine (Rose MCC 2009 R92) and chocolate left me with a turkish delight taste. It was so powerful the flavour. The second one (Chardonnay 2011 R50) with the matching chocolate was lemon/zesty flavoured and the third one was perfect in my opinion. It was the Pineau de Laborie which is a potstill fortified Pinotage at R66 a bottle. I really liked this wine, and with the chocolate it was just delicious. I bought two of the Pineau and matching chocolate as Christmas gifts.

My boyfriend did a wine and olive pairing:

Two wines I liked from the tasting were the Jean Taillefert 2010 at R174 a bottle. It has nice body, flavour and it was smooth. The other one I liked was the Shiraz 2011 (R62 a bottle), it was very nice, had good flavour and was rounded.

One thing I want to mention is that the staff here did not provide any information on the wine we tried. We simply chose what we wanted to try, sat down, they then brought our wine out on a tray and we then tried it at our own pace. I did quite like this, but in hindsight, it was a little disappointing that we didnt get an informative tasting. When you are with a group of friends and there for a fun time or a catch up, rather than there to learn about the wine, then it is perfect because you don't get interrupted. I imagine if you want an explaination on the wine, you could simply ask the staff and they would gladly provide you with the information.

I recommend visiting Laborie when in Paarl and be sure to have lunch or dinner at the restaurant Harvest!!

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