The Cape Winelands has enjoyed a growing trend in recent years, with most top estates – right from the verdant Stellenbosch region to the historic Constantia valley – offering one or more gourmet picnic options to enjoy.
The fun and festiveness of a pre-made, all-inclusive picnic – packed and ready to tuck into upon your arrival – is definitely a tempting prospect that most people cannot resist when planning to visit a wine farm nowadays.
It makes for a unique experience and, though not necessarily all that cheap cost-wise, this is an indulgent treat that family (and friends too) will love. November to April is loosely considered the most ideal window period for gourmet picnicking, though some estates start with the picnic season as early as October.
To keep things short and sweet, we’ve selected a top four gourmet picnic selection – but there are so many more, from Paarl to Franschhoek and beyond, for you to book and enjoy at these wonderful wine estates. (Please note: In most instances, prior booking and/or ordering is a must.)
1 – Boschendal (Franschhoek)
Photo credit: www.capetownmagazine.com
Boschendal has enjoyed a revival in recent years and with its history, stunning gardens and picturesque views, enjoying a picnic there comes highly recommended – especially given that there are two alfresco Le Pique Nique options to choose from.
They are: the Werf Garden Picnics, enjoyed under the trees on the Pavilion lawn, or the more formal Rhone Classic Picnics, which can be savoured at the beautifully laid tables – complete with waiting staff – in the midst of their lush vineyards or on a picnic blanket in the shade. (The picnic areas are a kilometre apart so make sure you’re headed for the right picnic spot!)
An assortment of freshly baked artisan breads, pâtés, cold meat cuts and delicious desserts are just some of the goodies that you will find in your beautiful, pre-booked wicker baskets for either option (though they each have their special selections which you can view here: http://www.boschendal.com/eat-and-drink/picnics.) They also offer vegetarian, banting and kiddies’ options for both picnics.
Rhone Classic picnic options: R440 for two; R240 for one; R85 for kiddies’ basket and R860 for four.
Werf Garden picnic options: R395 for two; R210 for one; R85 for kiddies’ option and R780 basket for four.
For more info: email [email protected] or call (021) 870 4274.
2 – Groot Constantia (Constantia)
Photo credit: www.simonsdeli.co.za
At South Africa’s oldest wine estate, they’ve introduced something fresh and happening, for you get to either design your picnic basket yourself or else, order a pre-packed one from their charming Simon’s Deli, which is found next to the great Simon’s Restaurant.
The pre-packed baskets contain a selection of: a fresh baguette, pâtés and dips, cold meats, classic Coronation chicken, potato and green salads, as well as preserves, local cheeses and sweet treats too. (There are also kiddies’ and vegetarian options available.)
Price: Available on request (contact Simon’s Deli)
For more info: email [email protected] or call (021) 794 1143.
3 – Blauuwklippen (Stellenbosch)
Photo credit: www.blaauwklippen.com
Known for its peace and tranquillity, set amidst beautiful surroundings, Blaauwklippen is the perfect place for a picnic – and these can be enjoyed under the trees or out on the lawn.
The picnic platters come with a selection of cheeses, charcuterie, white wine poached pear, a quiche, beetroot, feta and rocket salad, freshly baked breads, pâté, bacon jam and delicious desserts and other nibbles (like a mini milk tart or white chocolate truffle) too. (They also offer a vegetarian option on request.)
Price: R220 per person for a picnic platter; R75 for the kiddies’ picnic box.
For more info: visit www.blaauwklippen.com or call (021) 880 0133.
4 – Warwick (Stellenbosch)
Photo credit: toomuchloveliness.com
The picnics at this delightful family-owned-and-run wine farm are had next to the dam on the lawn, on picnic blankets atop comfy, giant cushions and beneath sheltering, cheery umbrellas, or at tables nestled inside their magical picnic pods, which are both fun and private, and can seat up to 12 guests. (Kids will also love the excellent jungle gym found near the edge of the lawn or the playing fountain just near the entrance.)
Parma ham, salami sticks, Moroccan salad (complete with couscous, cranberries, full cream yoghurt and much more), local cheeses, smoked salmon and biltong pâté both, as well as tasty chocolate treats and a bunch of grapes are what you can expect to find within your basket ‘wine crate’. (They also do a tasty vegetarian and basic kiddies’ option.)
Price: R500 for two; R300 for one; R80 for kiddies’ option.
For more info: visit www.warwickwine.com or call (021) 884 4410.
Conclusion: So now that you have this fine quartet of wonderful picnic options in the Cape Winelands to enjoy, all that remains for you to do is book your picnic basket and journey into the Cape wine country to enjoy it!