Cape Town’s inner city is fluid. It’s drenched in color, culture and most importantly, movement. You could say it’s the quintessential hustle and bustle. The beauty of Cape Town is location, location, location. Just a short drive takes you out of the activity and places you right into the heart of the famous Cape Winelands. A natural wonderland so close to the concrete jungle. It’s this contrast of vibrancy and tranquility that make it a top South Africa holiday destination. We were fortunate enough to be invited to the Val Du Charron, an established wine estate in Wellington dating back to 1699 and what is today, a producer of fine wines, luxury accommodation, delectable farm grown olives and an enviable spa.
Pulling up a winding driveway, we were immediately beguiled by stunning vistas of mountains and vineyards. This is what this part of the world is known for, the beautiful mountain views that leave you vista struck. We were invited to a unique production that Val Du Charron pour their passion into, the Theatre of Wine. Each year, Drinks International Wine Awards celebrates the best of wine tourism around the world. The Cape Winelands always stand strong in these awards but it was Val Du Charron that won the “Most Innovative Tourism Experience” category. The competitors in this particular awards include the likes of the United Kingdom, USA, Spain, Italy, Greece, Argentina, Chile and Portugal.
Being lead into the wine cellar, the distinctive aroma of wine filled our nostrils and enticed our palettes. But what caught our eye, were the creatively dressed staff. In Victorian clothing, top hats and canes included, our hands were firmly shook and we were greeted with broad grins and formal postures, there was a present air of excitement. We must add that the choice of the Wine Cellar adds to the ambiance of the theatrically dramatic. A woman stands poised by a large, silvery steel tank, lacey gloves and seductive red lips while tables are decorated with beautifully ornate candlestick holders. Let the show begin…
Lead by The Black Countess and Sommelier, Stephen Taylor, three acts are performed with three blends, Four White Legs (New World White Wine blend), Pieter Erasmus-den Deen (Cape Blend) and the Black Countess (Rhone-Style Blend). What takes this tasting to a new level of innovation is the story telling. Each blend is specifically titled and after an introduction to the blend, a performance follows. There are an impressive 15 different varietals on the Estate, making the blends the real stars of the shows but we giggled, sipped and listened intently to the history and stories that make this area and wine estate as popular as it is.
After our most entertaining wine tasting, we were escorted to the restaurant for a delicious lunch. The restaurant has large windows that almost serve the scenery on your plate as well. Airy, light and modern in design, it was where we whiled away the afternoon enjoying wine and the freshest local ingredients.
Val Du Charron is sublime and with accommodation options in the form of the Coach House and The Guesthouse, each complimented with their own plunge pool, their furnishings alone are designed to inspire. We would highly recommend a stay or a visit to this wine estate that envelopes your senses, tickles your taste buds and welcomes you so warmly.
Images Courtesy:Val Du Charron-Wine and Olive Estate Guesthouse and Spa