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Touring the wine estates around Somerset West: partnering fine wine and good food

January 7, 2011

The second in our series of wine tours close to Somerset West takes us on the R44 from the foothills of the Helderberg Mountain towards Stellenbosch.  These wineries all boast excellent eateries in fabulous settings.

Our first stop is the Avontuur Wine Estate which is on the right about 7km from Somerset West on the R44.  This wine farm has been owned by the Taberer family since 1984 and is situated on the south eastern slopes of Helderberg Mountain.  Wine tastings are offered daily.  There is a Mediterranean-inspired menu in the restaurant where visitors can enjoy views of False Bay all the way to Table Mountain.  Wine is not the only passion of the Taberer family though; their thoroughbred farm is one of South Africa’s top breeders of racehorses.

Returning to the R44 on the corner with Winery Road is Ken Forrester’s Estate.  Wine sales and tastings are on offer daily.  1km further along is 96 Winery Road restaurant, which serves a creative mix of Cape and Provençale food with Eastern influences, using fresh organic produce.

Back on the R44, the road continues to climb towards Stellenbosch and the Eikendal Wine Estate is on the right.  Wine tastings, sales and cellar tours are available daily at this Swiss-owned estate.  The restaurant, alongside the duck pond, offers Swiss-inspired fare including traditional fondue in winter.  Vineyard walks and fly-fishing are also available to visitors and there is a cheetah rescue project where you can learn more about these fascinating animals and even enter one of their enclosures.

A few kilometres short of Stellenbosch is Blaauwklippen Agricultural Estate.  Established in 1682 this is one of South Africa’s oldest wine estates and has the architecture to match.  Tasting and sales are on offer daily in the wine centre.  The family-friendly Barouche Restaurant offers South African and European dishes influenced by Cape Malay spices and own-grown herbs.  The restaurant terrace overlooks a play area for the kids.  There is a carriage museum and you can even tour the estate in an old-fashioned horse-drawn carriage.

These are just a selection of some of the great food and wines on offer locally.  After a hard day’s exploring our beautiful winelands, come back and relax back here at Penny Lane Lodge.

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