Exploring #FranscHHoek during winter
Once in a while we are fortunate enough to share some of the amazing experiences in #FranscHHoek with a bunch of like-minded fun-loving professionals that enjoy exploring new places and love to write about these. This time we invited some of our favourite bloggers from Cape Town to share with them what we think makes #FranscHHoek a wonderful value-for-money place to travel to during the colder winter months. Below we would like to share with you some of their inspiring images captured on Instagram.
Our first stop was at Babylonstoren. Here we enjoyed a guided tour of the magnificent food garden with chief gardener Gundula.
It is inspiring to see how the garden changes from season to season. Of course the garden looks spectacular at the moment all dressed up in Autumn colours.
Babylonstoren has now started cultivating mushrooms too and we were treated to a special mushroom inspired lunch in the House of Shadows.
Did you know that Alleé Bleue is one of the Western Cape's largest herb producers? We visited them to explore their hydroponic herb tunnels. Grown in coconut husks all herbs are naturally ventilated. It is fascinating to learn about growing herbs and also to get a better understanding of the different uses of herbs. They are so versatile.
Maison treated us to special sneak peak of what we can expect to be served in their tasting room from 1 July onwards. Chef Arno and his team has really gone all out to put together a menu that is diverse, enticing and seriously tasty.
A favourite was the miso lamb belly with gooseberry, apple, celery and mint. Another decadent treat was the perlemoen served with crisp corn, corn custard-melon compression and cucumber spice.
We tasted this and more with a glass of their crisp Maison Chenin Blanc in hand and finally ended off with a delicious chocolate malt cake, with caramelia cremeaux, beurre noisette, malt mallow, gooseberry butterscotch and a scoop of refreshing gooseberry sorbet. This is certainly a dessert that will tantalise all your taste buds (in a good way!)
Our evening ended off with a hearty winelands braai at La Clé Des Montagnes.
We were hosted in one of their luxury villas, which used to be the old manor house of the estate. This place oozes creativity and class and each of the four villas has been so thoughtfully decorated to create a welcoming space.
Winemaker Craig McNaught from Stony Brook joined us and treated us to a tasting of his range of premium wines. The Lyle Méthode Cap Classique with its extended maturaton time in the bottle, makes it one of South Africa’s only sparkling wines to spend more than 60 months on the lees.
Equally good, was the Stony Brook Ghost Gum White, The Max and the Ghost Gum Cabarnet Sauvignon. With the high caliber of wines we tasted it is hard to believe that Craig never actually officially studied winemaking, but simply learnt the secrets of the trade from his father through this family business. Thank goodness he decided not to go into IT!
For more information about Franschhoek and what to do in winter, please visit our website at www.franschhoek.org.za.