When in Stellenbosch ..... Art at the Delicatessen

Many places in and around this town take what the surroundings have to offer and make it better. Tokara is inpirational to me because it takes a truly spectacular place at the foot of a mountain and manages to beautify it even further - this time with garden installations.

At the moment a range of beautiful sculptures are on display at the Delicatessen. They welcome you as you drive to the Olive Shed from Tokara winery. They are in and around the modern fountain. And they are alongside the permanent jungle gym (styled from branches) and the massive bird’s nest – any child’s dream playground. Add to that the 1 300kg sculpture of Nomkhubulwane, a massive elephant made from recycled rubber tyres and galvanised steel by artist Andries Botha, and Amusement Hare with his long ears (Guy du Toit’s giant rabbit), and any child will find themselves staring with wide-eyed wonder and a smile of delight.

Although the rest of the installation is also whimsical - its tough not too smile at a seven foot upside down man made of sticks - its nevertheless a collection that deserves serious attention.

The Delicatessen’s details are here

Image credits: Nani Kornelius & Elanie Fourie

When in Stellenbosch ..... the Delicatessen at the Olive Shed

Somehow, whenever I am in Stellenbosch, I always end up at the Delicatessen, the deli attached to the Olive Shed on the farm Tokara. Even if it is only for a cappuccino between a breakfast with my sister and a lunch date with friends, as was the case on the Sunday morning of my visit. Can one ever get enough of the beautiful views over their vineyards and olive groves towards the Hottentots Holland mountains to the south and the Simonsberg mountain to the north?

All their olive products, including their single cultivar olive oils, kalamata olives and paste, are available for tasting under the beautiful white plastic chandelier with olive-shaped leaves (short add break: if you are in Johannesburg, all their products are available at Tapenade Olive Shop!).

However, the thing that makes this such a special place, the thing I really want to show you from my visit, is the beautiful art on display at the Delicatessen. More about this tomorrow, but for today, a little taster – pun absolutely intended :-)

Delicatessen, Tokara Wine Estate 
Top of Helshoogte Pass

Visit their website or like their Facebook page.

Image credits: Elanie Fourie

When in Stellenbosch ..... Dornier

For a quick lunch during my Stellenbosch visit, we ended up at Dornier, also on the Blaauwklippen Road. Sitting on the patio of the Bodega restaurant housed in an 18th Century historic barn, overlooking their modern winery (its curved roof mimics the slope of the Stellenbosch mountain behind it), the original plan of just quickly grabbing a meal tends to go out the window a little bit! You end up ordering another glass of wine, you find yourself sitting back and the afternoon just slips away while you soak in the beauty of the view.

The Dornier family’s history is fascinating – they can trace back their family roots to the 13th Century in France. The name Dornier describes a profession, that of a merchant of potteries. The family later moved to Germany and one of the ancestors was Claude Dornier, a German airplane builder. His legacy remains in that several aircraft is named after him. 

In 1926 a Swiss aviation pioneer, Water Mittelholzer, embarked on a flight from Switzerland across the African continent to Cape Town in 77 days. He did this is a Dornier Merkur that was reconfigured as a seaplane so that he could plan his journey along the Nile, lakes and the open sea, independent from airfields. The amazing thing is that the original propeller of the Dornier Merkur is now exhibited in the international departure hall of the Cape Town airport. 

Born into a family of engineers, the founder of Dornier, Christoph Dornier, was a lover of art and against the will of his father, he persisted to became a recognized artist. That love is now showcased in the beautiful artworks displayed in the restaurant and in the artwork that is Dornier Wine Estate.

Dornier Wines
Blaauwklippen Road
You can visit their website or like their Facebook page.

Image credits: Elanie Fourie

When in Stellenbosch ..... Waterford

Somebody once said that God was in a particularly good mood when He created the Boland, so he spent a bit of extra time and attention here. Driving into Waterford Estate is like entering the very best of the area between the Simonsberg and Helderberg mountain ranges. It’s situated on the Blaauwklippen road a few kilometres from my sister’s house. The first impression you get, passing rolling lawns, citrus groves, and lovely lavender beds as you drive up to the winery (built from mountain sandstone quarried essentially from next to the vineyard land and timber grown on the estate), is that the owners of this place realise just how magnificent a piece of earth they are privileged to own and cultivate – this place is loved and it shows.

The farm was established in 1998 when Jeremy and Leigh Ord acquired 120Ha of vineyard land that was previously part of the Stellenrust Farm. In partnership with winemaker Kevin Arnold and his family, who planned the new winery and resurrected the existing vineyards and orchards, the two families created something extraordinary.

We went to Waterford for their unique wine and chocolate tasting, which was held in the beautiful courtyard with its tinkling fountain surrounded by trees. Three wines are served with three chocolates specially crafted by the Greyton-based chocolatier, Richard von Geusau, all beautifully displayed on a wooden board. First up was the Kevin Arnold Shiraz (which is so special it immediately got itself selected as the husband’s gift from the trip), paired with Masala Chai Dark Chocolate. Next up was a Cabernet Sauvignon with Rock Salt Dark Chocolate. Lastly came the Waterford Heitherleigh with a Rose Geranium Milk Chocolate. The name of this wine derives from first names of Jeremy Ord and Kevin Arnold’s wives – actually, each wine in their range bears the name of a member of the Ord or Arnold families.

Walking out of the tasting room, a slightly unexpected sight awaited: a typical safari type game viewing Landrover. We learned that the farm take guests on a two hour wine drive safari around the farm to show them the flora and fauna on the farm, a bit of the vineyards and spectacular views from high up on the slopes of the Helderberg mountain. Sounds fantastic, so maybe next time?

You can visit their website or like their Facebook page.

Image credits: Some of these photos were taken by me, but as is always the case when I am somewhere with my sister, I just tend to hand her my camera to take advantage of her fantastic eye for a shot. Therefore, most of these beautiful images were captured by Elanie Fourie.

When in Stellenbosch ..... The Farmer's Daughter

In the next stop on my grand tour of Stellenbosch, I decided that another favourite is The Farmer’s Daughter. It is located in the Oude Bank Building (same building as the absolutely amazing De Oude Bakkerij, a must visit whenever you are in town) on the corner of Bird and Church Street.

I am in love with the facade of this shop! It takes my breath away every time I see it. The proteas on the table outside are simply beautiful. 

Inside the shop is brimming with locally manufactured d├ęcor and home ware items, jewellery, clothing and crafts, all beautifully merchandised. One can easily spend hours inside being amazed at the local talent showcased in this shop.

Shop 4, Oude Bank Building
Cnr Bird & Church Street

You can like their Facebook page here.

Image credits: All photography by me