Last week we sent our intern Willy on a Stellenbosch wine tour with “Wine Flies”. Here is what he experienced, well, what he remembers:
“I started the day with a big boerewors & egg breakfast. Yes that’s my own creation to avoid getting drunk to quickly! After the feast I got picked up by our guide Terrence at around 8am and after collecting everyone else from various hotels and backpackers in Cape Town we headed towards Stellenbosch.
Yes, I know it’s quite early for drinking but considering the weather and the fact that it was a workday it seemed to be quite appealing to me. It didn’t take us long to get to the first wine yard but before the tasting started we had to learn how to make wine of course. So Terrence explained it to us step by step from growing the grapes to filling the bottles including an interesting excursion into South Africa’s wine making history.
After gaining the knowledge we obviously had to try the wine. We started with a glass of the estates very own Methode Cap Classique (MCC), which is South Africa’s version of champagne. Delicious! Afterwards we went from white to red wine. I think there were 6 different ones. But before we could drink it we had to learn the proper way of tasting including 5 steps challenging all your senses. Hectic but worth it! We experienced a lot more flavours than by just downing it as usual. For everyone who didn’t have Willy’s B&E breakfast (I should file a patent on that!) there was some Biltong for the wine.
Once our taste buds were activated we moved on to the second estate where we took it to the next level- wine & cheese pairing! There were in total 5 different types of wines going along with the same amount of various types of cheese. As in the most wine yards on the tour the farm dogs entertained us quite well.
As drinking quickens the appetite I was glad it was lunchtime now. For that we went (of course) to another wine estate where we ate in the glow of a nice and warm chimney fire. Afterwards it was time to gain some knowledge again. We got to know all about wine barrels and what happens to them after they’ve done the job. Finally we got to pull ourselves a few glasses right from the barrel.
Meanwhile the wine supported the socialisation of the group and talks became more and more interesting. So the old saying “In vino veritas” seems to have quite a background.
In the cellar of the 4th estate was a five course chocolate & wine tasting waiting for us with amazing combinations such as Shiraz and chai-chocolate pairing.
The last estate we went to had probably the best wines (and ports) I’ve ever tasted. An indicator for their quality is probably that one of their wines was chosen for a recent royal wedding in Europe. Unfortunately I forgot which one it was due to, well, you know why… but how about finding out yourself and book a Stellenbosch wine tour @ Ashanti’s travel center?”