Enjoying the Stellenbosch Wine Festival
A little while ago I got to enjoy the 2017 Stellenbosch Wine Festival. Setting out into the wine lands on a gorgeous sunny Sunday afternoon to indulge in the fruit of the vine certainly put me in good spirits. I hopped in the car with enthusiasm and made my way from my sweet city apartment all the way into the heart of Stellenbosch.
Upon arrival, we were warmly greeted both by the sun, which had reached full tilt, and the front desk, making sure our armbands were firmly attached as they provided access to the Media Area, entitling the owner of said armband to be treated to complimentary beverages and sumptuous eats. I had to pull myself away from the pumpkin fritters as they are my absolute Achilles Heel! A great South African gem of a snack, it’s both vegetable and yet sugary sweet, giving you the licence to indulge as a healthy alternative. Well, at least that’s what I tell myself.
As I ventured out from under the gentle spray of mist keeping our canopied area cool and braved the midday sun, I made a beeline for the tasting booth: Local wines on offer with their master wine crafter there to educate and indulge the avid wine drinker and connoisseurs. One in particular caught my attention: Audacia, a cheeky name to match its flavour and personality. It boasts being the first red wine created by using indigenous Rooibos and Honeybush toasted wood chips. These are packed with high levels of antioxidants and the wine is free of nasty sulphites, caffeine and preservatives. The wood gives distinctive flavours to the red wine, including smokiness, hints of vanilla, cherry and black pepper. Therefore, it’s not only beneficial for the body, but good for the palate too!
If that wasn’t enough, there was the delightfully chilled Louisvale MCC on tap. It’s known for its elegant and deliciously expressive aromas of fruit and brioche. A bubbly fit for royalty but thankfully affordable to the mainstream market, making it an excellent fit for any special occasion.
As we sipped, the bands played on and the music, combined with the heat of the wine lands, had me seeking out some sustenance. My particular fancy was the Mexican inspired Dos Chido, roughly translated as “too cool”! After wrapping my greedy hands around a crisp and tasty vegetarian wrap, I was offered a Usana Pino Gris to accompany the dish. A match made in heaven, my mouth being the setting of a masterful flavour explosion!
The day is never quite complete without a little silliness. I soon found myself shoeless and grape stomping in a barrel to avid encouragement by the small crowd that assembled to do the same. Nothing can quite describe the feeling of the goop created by your dancing feet. However, I admit my skin felt soft for days after. Perhaps I’ve stumbled on to a new foot fetish or home remedy!
All in all, this was a magnificent day in the heart of vino country. I wouldn’t have changed a thing. Well, perhaps one thing: a dash or two more of sunblock! Heat aside, your thirst is most certainly quenched and your senses delighted. I’m diarising the Stellenbosch Wine Festival for next year. This is one not to be missed.
For more info on the Stellenbosch Wine Festival, please visit their official website here.
Review Date: March 2017