11 October 2011

Winelands - Doolhof - Wellington

Winelands - Doolhof - Wellington

The Western Cape has many wine estates, some more famous than others. We visited Doolhof Wine Estate on a very hot Sunday in October. It's a small estate in a very picturesque valley situated at the bottom of the Bain's Kloof Pass. The valley has only one road in and out so the early settlers called this Doolhof which means labyrinth in the local language of Afrikaans. In keeping with their name, they have placed a labyrinth near the entrance gate. A labyrinth has only one entry and one exit as one should meditate and claim your thoughts as you pass on your journey to the centre. It was so hot that I cheated and escaped to the shade - perhaps a few shady trees would make this a more pleasant spot for this worthwhile exercise during the very hot summer months in Wellington.

The restaurant has a very small menu, mainly sandwiches so we opted for the Cheese Board. Sitting under the oaks in the shade was divine and we thoroughly enjoyed the various local cheeses with nuts/kiwi fruit/grenadillas/preserves and crispy bread. The wine tasting is good value for 5 tastings and this can be enjoyed with your meal. For the non-wine drinkers like myself, be warned - there is no beer!!

Whilst the times are advertised as 10.00 - 16.00 on Sundays, the Wine Tasting & Restaurant was closed at approx. 13.00 just after we finished eating so anybody arriving later would  have been very disappointed. Maybe they were just closing the doors to keep the heat out? It would be best to phone them first just to check whether they are open (021 873 6911)

Grand Dédale Country House is situated in the grounds of the wine estate and is, supposedly, Wellington's most exclusive privately-owned Country House, catering for approx 12 guests. Prices tags are high so check before booking.
It looks gorgeous and surely spoils and pampers guests!

The estate has walks along the river and through the vineyards and these can be enjoyed by day visitors as well as guests. Nestling in the long valley, surrounded by the Groenberg, Limietberge and Hawekwa mountains, it's all very scenic and tranquil. The river walk was lovely and cool while the vineyards were in full sun and very hot. In the cool of the morning or later afternoon, both walks would be most enjoyable.

The wines producer by Doolhof are Malbec,Merlot, Pinotage,Shiraz,Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Rose and a few blends. Awards have been won on a regular basis for some of their wines and, by tasting a variety, you can best decide what suits your own tastes. 

Enjoy a small hidden gem in a picturesque valley

© Judelle Drake

No comments: