My husband and I were fortunate enough to visit Nederburg wine estate. If you are from South Africa, chances are you have heard or seen the name at least once. It is sort of a popular or household name if you will. Because of this, I was quite excited to visit the actual estate, see the magic, put a proverbial face to the name.
I should probably start by saying that on the day we visited it was oddly chilly for a summer day in Cape Town with light drizzle and clouds marsh mellowing over the beautiful Paarl mountains. This would of course call for something cosy, intimate and relaxing. At the start of our visit we were warmly welcomed and begun our wine tasting. We were taken to a private room where we received a beautiful rendition of the farms history – of course, by all accounts, we would need a lot more time as there is a lot to be said, but with the time we had we were truly spoilt for walking those steps in time.
Our guide who does these types of tours (as we also did a old cellar walk through) was so passionate about what she had to say about the farm, the wines, the people that began it all. We worked on a timeline from when it all began and one cannot help but feel yourself slipping in and out of the decades in which the farm has existed – really a special thing to have experienced. We spoke about some of the history and milestones, some of the difficulties and successes and some of the stories that make this place unique. As a South African is is very special as there are a number of things that make this place true to South African culture and heritage (that I will leave to you to figure out what you visit).
The wines are absolutely gorgeous, it is sometimes difficult to keep up with all the “wine talk” especially if you know nothing about it. But, this was really nice for me personally. I liked that I felt I was “experiencing” the wine, the nose, the taste. Nederburg wines live up to its calling of “handmade wine”. Each feels as if it was perfectly made, just for you.
We were spoilt as we tasted a total of 8 wines, excluding the sparkling Brut received on arrival. Thereafter, we took a lovely walk through to the old cellar where we could get a small glimpse of the how it looks each day to make these wines literally come to life. Some of the space also held an old German style bar area where if you look closely, your imagination might let you see the Nederburg forefathers gathering, laughing and discussing their big plans. I must also mention on our way to the cellar, we saw one of the most gorgeous oak trees which we learnt earlier in the day was used traditionally for the wine corks.
After all of this we definitely worked up an appetite. Again, once we reached the Red Table restaurant we were welcomed warmly by the staff who were absolutely wonderful and ready to settle us in and make us feel at home. The restaurant is the old Manor House which was really quite lovely. I mentioned earlier that we were in the mood for something warm and cosy – this was it. Our beautiful table was facing the mountains and part of the vineyard through old french style window pains – just dandy! We received bread for the table and drinks were served as well as the menu to subdue our very much hungry tummies. I had the beef cappacio and my husband the seafood salad which were absolutely delicious, truly tasty and all together wow. We then had mains, lamb and the fish of the day which again were wonderful. The portions are also more than generous so no need for that dreaded pie or Mc Donald’s stop on the way home. We were more than satisfied with this but still, we had dessert as well which, pardon the cliche, but was certainly the cherry on top of a wonderful meal and day. I had the chocolat fondant which quite literally melted in my mouth and oozed with yummy warm chocolate. It was divine to say the least.
Throughout, every person we spoke to was friendly and polite with a true passion for and pride in what they do and are apart of. I should mention as well that right from the beginning when we fist made the reservation everything was laid out and clear form the start, there is a sense of excellence in what the people at Nederburg are doing and how they do it. We felt very much loved and the hospitality was top class.