What a weekend!

We thought it would be nice to share some of our favourite things to do in and around the Swartland. Spending a weekend (or any few days) in the region can really relieve you of the stresses of the city. I mean there is no traffic, the few taxis in the towns are driven by polite law abiding citizens, the ratio of shining retail window display to real things made by locals are in your favour and the landscapes are wide open and unobstructed.

So, if you are planning to spend a few days in our (or any other local) accommodation (note, ours is the most instagram worthy and my gosh that linen!) here are a few of the things we like to do within 30mins drive of the farm.

Hiking:

So many options; you can start on the farm and walk into the Paardeberg (ask Semma); drive to the Riebeek Mountain and take the newly reopened route from Pulpit Rock or take a super easy walk up the granite hill outside Malmesbury (see slideshow below).

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Alternatively drive through Wellington and into Bain’s Kloof Pass (gorgeous views of everything the light touches) and stop off to sit next to the river (ask Helena for tips). For all of these we can provide guides on request and at a small fee.

Most of these routes are also mountain bike friendly!

Shopping and eating like a local:

On your way to Bain’s Kloof you will pass my favourite leather shop. Redemption Leather is a local factory / shop where you can buy hand made shoes, bags, belts and so much more. Worth a visit. I should go back but the boots I bought in 2016 are still going strong!

For farm fresh food you have plenty of options… as you should in the country side.

In Riebeek you can get great produce at The Biggest Little Market (previously Crisp) opposite Beans about Coffee (yes, another coffee is a great idea!) and something to braai straight from Delico Meat, a farmstyle family butchery.

The Biggest Little Market produce

For meals we always recommend Mama Cucina (great specials on the blackboards but the Sophia Loren pizza never fails) and make sure to look into King Olaf Furniture across the road. We also like drinking cocktails at The Alchemist, buying wine at The Wine Kollective and checking out art at the various galleries.

In Malmesbury you should stop at The Swartland Street Market where the Bill&Co Deli and Wine Shop stock all things local and Marvel Bistro and Bakery prepare good food daily. There is also a lovely urban food garden, created by Buurtvrug, and lots of space for city kids to stretch their legs. They have monthly winetasting dinners, market days and more.

Screen Shot 2019-06-18 at 10.57.12

Wine (and other) tastings:

Most small producers are only open by appointment (like us) so make sure to enquire in advance.  Check out the Swartland Wine and Olive Route’s site or that of Riebeek Valley Tourism for details on cellars that have open doors and active tasting rooms.

We’ve set aside a few dates for tasting days on the farm (click click) so try coming out on those weekends! And we have started to put together a sort of “menu of experiences” that friends and neighbours can offer so ask Semma about that when you book and get the most out of a weekend in die platteland.

wineclub2

Ok, this post is getting long. I will do a follow up story with nurseries, horse riding, local festivals and other things, soon.

The Revolution was photographed

Maree once again took some stunning pictures at the Swartland Revolution this year. Here are a few of our favourites, lots more on her blog.

There is a nice summery of the weekend on The Swartland Revolution’s site. Have a look. 

Meanwhile, our Family Red 2009 is number 93 on Wine Spectator’s Top 100 wines for 2013. Not too shabby…

Learn from the best

And then he was in France.

Adi visited Vouvray this weekend to observe the best in Chenin Blanc.

Below is Damien Delecheneau (Domaine de la Grange Tiphaine), who will be in the Swartland to present Expert Opinions at The Revolution next month. He spent the Sunday afternoon picking a vineyard with friends.

photo (1)

photo (3)

While Vincent Careme, (Domaine Vincent Careme) might be one of the world’s best Chenin winemakers, Adi showed him how to pack a braai grill, and kept a keen eye on his braai skills (which apparently he learned from his South African wife Tania).


photoBoth these legends will bring their wines to The Swartland Revolution and present them at the Expert Opinion tasting on Saturday the 9th of November.

If you did not get a ticket to the event, come to Riebeek for the Swartland Independent Street Party that afternoon, taste wine from 18 SI members and mingle in the streets. See you there.

 

The sky is the limit…

Tickets for this year’s Swartland Revolution are already sold out and we only just announced the first confirmed formal tasting.

This year, the last of our Saturday tastings (the Expert Opinion slot in 2012) will feature:
Vincent Careme (Dom Vincent Careme)
Damien Delecheneau (Dom de la grange tiphaine)
and Benjamin Joliveau (Dom Huet)

Together they will show eight wines (which will be announced in due time).

SR2013 takes place on 8 and 9 November this year. There will be another epic Swartland Independent Street Party so follow @swartlandrev for more details.

Revolution already on the way

Yes, this weekend past was the third annual Swartland Revolution. A weekend of great wines (from France, Germany, Portugal and naturally, the Swartland), fabulous food and lots of Swartland gees. Like one happy revolutionary observed: the right level of geeky/nerd/fun!! 

Maree Louw, revolutionary wife, once again took some amazing pictures, and we gladly share them with you here.

Hiiii Eben

The first tasting, Quality First was presented by father and son team, Alain and Maxime Graillot who each showed three of their wines from France.

Adi showing Samuel some tricks of the trade.

Friday night BBQ at Bazaar, by Moerby Kultuur.

Die Baardskeerdersbos Orkes had everyone dancing. “Klein bietjie wyn, klein bietjie wyn” (lies, all lies!)

Adi and Callie in good spirits (especially considering it is 9am on THE Saturday)

Beer and worsrol break between Saturday morning tastings.

Lunch, by “the revolutionary moms” led by Adi’s mom Judy, was a huge success.

The Moms! (take a bow!)

And then there was the Swartland Independent Street Party, with 18 members pouring their wines in Short Street Square.

Including Jasper’s new venture, made on Kalmoesfontein – Muskeljaatkat!

And then it was over. Another great success, with attendees already asking “can I book for next year…”

Um, no, give us a chance to recover, celebrate summer, harvest and then once we’ve started planning, we can talk about another revolution.

Thanks for sharing in the experience!

More pics on Maree’s blog.

picture opportunities

Over the long weekend our financial manager (the guy who pays all of us) Gerrie and his family visited Kalmoesfontein. Gerrie has a knack with a camera too and sent some lovely pictures showing that it is still far from Autumn on the farm.

And then we were at the Riebeek Valley Olive Festival this weekend, pouring some wine.

last photo with thanks to Di Procter

Are you excited yet!?

Victoria Moore meets the next generation of winemakers at South African wine festival Swartland Revolution and concludes: ‘When it comes to wine, nowhere in South Africa is as exciting as Swartland right now!’

Moore attended the Swartland Revolution in Riebeek in November last year and writes a very nice article for The Telegraph

When we revolted…

Pictures from the 2011 Swartland Revolution. We know we are a tad late, but it took us a while to recover, and then we wanted to wait for the full selection of pictures from ‘neighbour’ (it’s a long bumpy drive to the Porseleinberg, but we still consider Callie & Maree neighbours) and photographer Maree, cause you know, we like to be a little different.

So here is our alternative choices of images from a revolution. If you missed it you missed out!

Oh goody (bag)!

Quality first – Olivier Clape

Revolutionary BBQ (by Reuben Riffel) at Bazaar. 

 entertainment from Die Baardskeerdersbos Orkes! ‘dis n lekker ou jan…’

                                                                                      Adi’s soap box from where he told many charming lame jokes while moderating the Expert Opinions tasting.

 lunch at bar bar black sheep!

Jasper receiving our official Swartland Independent decanter from Eben Sadie just before the street party!
Till next year!
The 2012 Swartland Revolution will take place on 9 & 10 November. Ticket sales will open in March 2012, start saving… Read more here / or follow the revolution on twitter / or like it on the book of faces.

Plaas living

You can now come stay in the cottage on Kalmoesfontein! The cottage, that sleeps four people (one double room and another room with two single beds) has two en-suite bathrooms, a lovely open plan kitchen / living room with a massive fireplace and views of the Swartland from the Paardeberg.

There are also hiking trails, horses, cellars, veggie gardens and more to explore!

Kalmoesfontein is located in the Paardeberg and within bike riding distance from Paarl, Wellington and Riebeek Kasteel.

Read more, see pictures and booking details by clicking here~