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Wine Wednesday (5)

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The view from the tasting deck at Springfield Wines.

I may be wrong, but it seems you guys are not really into the Wine Wednesdays? Do you want to know more about the wine specifically? Please let me know…

Nevertheless, today we are visiting Springfield Estate, just outside of the town Robertson in the Robertson Wine Valley, about 160 km from Cape Town.

I tasted their Miss Lucy wine about 4 year ago when visiting a friend in Pretoria, and loved every sip. Then I bought a house in Robertson, and discovered that Springfield is right on my doorstep! Happy days! πŸ™‚

Springfield wines are really quality, delightful wines. Each and every one brings something to please the palate. The setting of the farm and tasting deck is peaceful and beautiful, and the ideal place to unwind and chill for a while. And best of all, the tasting and cellar tours are free!

Visit them virtually, and see what they are about. From the very first paragraph of their website, you will know that you are onto something good – ” – our need for perfection is driven by our honour – it is our honour that ensures that we will only ever release a vintage that has greatness, and nothing less.”

Amazingly, the farm has been in the hands of the same family since 1898, now flourishing under the vision of the 9th generation of French Huguenot descendants, who arrived in South Africa from the Loire valley in France in 1688.

Their philosophy is to make wine as naturally as possible, and quality is more important than quantity. Six delicious whites to choose from, and five amazing reds. As you browse their website, click on each of the wines to read more about their wine philosophy, and the wines themselves. If you ever come across Springfield wine, treat yourself to a bottle or two, you will be so glad you did! And visit them if you are ever in South Africa – worth a detour.

The cellars.
Wine tasting at Springfield.

Wine lovers, I hope you are starting to realize that the Robertson Wine Valley is worth a visit. You can spend a week here, easily, to visit all the estates and enjoy the beauty of the area, and the hospitality of our people.

Please note, I am not getting paid for this post – it is my own attempt to promote the area I live in because I think it is worthy to be ‘on the map’.

Until next time, keep calm and sip a glass of wine. πŸ™‚

Wine Wednesday (4)

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Viljoensdrift wine – Sauvignon Blanc.

I haven’t forgotten the wine lovers out there!

The estate I have chosen for today, unfortunately does not sell to international buyers on line. That nearly caused me to not add them to my WW team, but I am also promoting the Robertson Wine Valley and not only the wines.

Viljoensdrift Estate, has its roots in the 1800’s, when the first of the Viljoen family (Villion was the surname of the French Huguenots that landed in the Cape) started planting grapes for wine and brandy making. From 1968- 1998, the farm grew and delivered grapes to the co-op, but when dad Ben stepped down, brothers Fred and Manie decided to start producing their own wines from the excellent grapes they were growing on the farm. The rest, like they say, is history!

Alongside grapes, they also grow deciduous fruits, and they take conservation very seriously by trying to keep as much as possible of the unique natural environment intact as possible. They are committed to the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative, which aims to minimize the loss of threatened natural habitat and to contribute to sustainable wine production, which gives them five stars, in my opinion.

Aside from the fact that the farm is situated on the Breede River in beautiful natural surroundings, Viljoensdrift is well-known for the fact that they are the only farm in the area that does a ferry trip on the river, and it is well worth taking the time to enjoy drifting down the river. You can buy some ‘provisions’ πŸ˜‰ from their deli on the premises – wine, cold drinks, cheeses, charcuterie, freshly baked sourdough bread, olives, pickles, and much more!

With your nibbles and drinks you can then get onto the ferry, and enjoy an hour or so of peace and quiet, listening and watching the abundance of birds cavorting in and around the water.

The deli.
The ferry.
Some of the fare on offer.
Drifting on the river…

If you are planning a trip this way, please have a look at the Viljoensdrift website, to know more about their wines and what they offer you as tourist.

I hope you can begin to understand that should you ever be so lucky to visit South Africa, and you love wine, you cannot miss out on a visit to the Robertson Wine Valley!!!

PS. This is NOT a paid ad, nor am I in any way compensated for this or any of my other wine posts, I am merely trying to promote the area I live in and love!

Wine Wednesday!! (2)

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One of the views from inside the tasting and bistro building.

This time, I am actually on time with my post!

I just want to clarify – I am not going to go into detail about the wines – the notes and flavours etc. I will only feature vineyards and/or wine tasting venues that I feel have really good wines, or wines that are good value for money. I am going to tell you about the experience, the people, the surroundings, so if ever you come to South Africa, and you like wine, then you know where to go!

Today I am featuring a place called Esona Boutique Wine Estate. It is still a ‘young’ estate (compared to some in the Western Cape!) – the current owners, Rowan and Caryl, have made a lot of changes to the farm since they bought it in 2003, and has been producing wines for the last 10 years. It is set in beautiful surroundings, again, like the previous one I featured, in the gorgeous Breede River Valley, near my town Robertson, just over a 150km from Cape Town.

One of the vineyards.

They currently produce Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Shiraz, Frankly My Dear (RosΓ©), Chenin Blanc, Pinot Noir, Grenache, and Colombar, and are planning to add another 4 wines to the repertoire soon.

The tasting takes place in a beautiful old cellar underground. The wines are absolutely delightful, and is presented and tasted in such a way that you really appreciate the nuances of the wine – you also get to pair the wines with fruit and chocolate, which opens up your palate to a whole new world. The young lady that does the tasting, is very knowledgeable and friendly. An interesting fact that comes across clearly, is that the shape and size of the wine glass makes a huge difference in the taste of the wine!

In the cellar.

Esona also has a Bistro where you can eat something while enjoying the views and the wine – I think one can easily spend hours there with family or friends.

Just before the wine is poured…

Rowan and Caryl take teaching and development very seriously, and they sponsor young people in the area so they can learn how to become chefs and wine makers. Please take the time to browse their web site, who knows, you might just see something you would like to order… πŸ˜‰

https://esona.co.za/

Please do visit South Africa, we are friendly and welcoming hosts, and remember to include our beautiful valley and world class wines in your itinerary!

Until next time, stay safe, don’t drink and drive, and start planning your trip to sunny South Africa!! πŸ˜€

Wine Wednesday – one day late…

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The garden at Silverthorn Wines, on the bank of the Breede River.

I wanted to start my Wednesday wine blog yesterday, but I got distracted by other things, so my very first Wine Wednesday blog, is happening on a Thursday… No nasty comments, please! πŸ˜‰

Last week I told you about my visit to a few wine farms in the area (see https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/zelmare.com/1391) , but I only touched on the five places we visited, with a promise of more detail later – so, here we go!

If you love wine, wine tasting and beautiful surroundings, you get it all when you visit our general area, and you get it in spades when you visit Silverthorn Wines.

When you step out of the vehicle, you are immediately drawn to the scenery, as this beautiful winery lies on the banks of the Breede River. The hosts, John and Karen Loubser, has only recently started producing their wine full time on the farm, as John worked as wine maker on another farm, and their grapes were transported there and made off premise.

The tasting room.
John and Karen.

They give you a quick tour of the production area, and then it is time to get down to the serious business of tasting! The tasting happens around a large family size table (with a story of its own!) in a wonderfully informal style. John enjoys telling you about his wines, and he encourages any questions you may have. Interesting tidbits about the terroir, and the general area, makes for an entertaining tasting.

Production area. (That is not the tasting table!)
The tasting table.

Now, the wine… Silverthorn Wines produces only MCC. What on earth is that?, you may ask. Well, MCC is the South African version of champagne, but we may not call it that, of course. So in SA it is called MCC – MΓ©thode Cap Classique. Basically it is champagne, made like champagne, and tastes like champagne, only it is not called champagne.

Silverthorn Wines produce 4 different MCC’s, of which 3 is readily available, and the fourth is only available once a year, when it is auctioned by the Cape Winemaker’s Guild. The wines are excellent, and for me personally, it is impossible to choose a favourite. Even the names are tantalizing – Jewel Box, The Green Man, The Genie, and The Big Dog.

The wines with their beautifully designed labels.

If you are a wine lover, and if you ever visit South Africa, I would highly recommend that you take a few days to tour our area to taste our superb, world class wines and enjoy our beautiful scenery and friendly people.

To know more about Silverthorn Wines, or to order, please visit their site at https://www.silverthornwines.co.za/ (This is NOT a paid advertisement, it is merely an attempt from my side to promote our wines and area.)

Until our next visit, be safe, be happy! πŸ˜€