Living in the Cape, you just have to have a favourite one of these. There are so many to choose from and I can’t think of a more pleasant way to spend a good-weathered Sunday. Sigh…
My favourite wine farm is Solms Delta in Franschhoek.
Like a visit with old friends, there’s an equal sense of familiarity and excitement when you drive past the rock walls and roses leading up to the tasting room and museum. As we walked up on the perfectly Autumn day, Steven welcomed us with a big smile and a firm handshake. I felt so at home I almost said “long time no see!”
We tasted all the wines as we sat at rustic wooden tables in the garden overlooking the vineyards. Steven is a Wine and Heritage Guide, and he lived up to his title with authentic, honest and hilarious anecdotes about the farm and the area. Solms Delta employees live on and around the farm and have come from the area for centuries. To say there’s a sense of community sounds a little facetious… the farm is the heart of the area and everyone seems to benefit from its, uh, fruits, for lack of a better word.
And the heart of any home is in the kitchen. You have to visit Fyndraai restaurant. It’s labelled “hearty Cape cuisine” but its so much more. I don’t know how they do it, but it’s like your ouma and some gourmet French chefs got together and came up with this beautiful but honest menu.
Chef Shaun Schoeman came to chat to us about the overpowering wild garlic and herbs he has growing in his garden outside the kitchen. He says it takes some restraint and patience to fully appreciate their flavours. Well, he’s got it right already so we’ll leave the cooking up to him.
I ordered the Springbok shank with parsnip puree and sweet potato chips.
So tender, so complementary, so boldly comforting. Look, I’m nto going to even try to recreate the sensation for you, because it’s simply impossible. You have to try this. No, they’re not paying me to say this. I’m just so excited to have found good quality food, served in the most beautiful place, with the warmest service. Not having had a proper family Sunday lunch in many years, this is the closest I’ve come to it outside of well, family homes.
Ag, dis net so flippen lekker hier, hoor?!
On our way out we picked up a CD called “Hiervandaan”, a name also given to one of the estate’s prize wines. It’s lovely local folk music that will take you back there even when you’re sitting in your CBD loft.