Winter is the season that mostly involves hibernation. We very seldom venture outside when it's cold and seek the indoors where we can be warmed by blankets and heaters. If you are however suffering from a touch of cabin fever, here are ten wineries with fireplaces.
Morgenster is well known for their Italian inspired wines and visitors to the estate have the option of tasting wines from a range of vintages. Morgenster also offers olive and olive oil tastings that is a unique experience. The newly built Sofia's at Morgenster restaurant also offers exciting specials such as their two course menu for R135 (R205 with wine pairing) or three courses for 195 (R305 with wine pairing). Sofia's also serves breakfast throughout winter, click here for more information.
Perched on the side of a mountain overlooking False Bay, Waterkloof offers breathtaking views and phenomenal architecture. Their newly released Circle of Life White 2011 is a must try when visiting. You can now also purchase Healey's Farmhouse Cheddar from the tasting room with your tasting. And if the fireplace is simply too alluring to leave, enjoy their winter special meal (two course for R220 per person and three courses for R280).
Asara Wine Estate and Hotel
Asara's beautiful tasting room overlooks the estate's dam where you can see a wealth birdlife while you enjoy your tasting. The new addition to the Asara family, the Asara Nouveau is a must try as the wine is simply delicious. If you feel like a bite to eat after your tasting, you can kick back and relax in the whisky and cigar lounge in front of a cosy fire.
Kleine Zalze is just outside Stellenbosch and forms part of the De Zalze Winelands Golf Estate. The estate offers some fine golfing, superb wines and a restaurant well worth visiting. Terroir restaurant has an affordable winter special on at the moment, two courses for R175 or three courses for R198. Both deals include a complimentary glass of award-winning Kleine Zalze wine to set the mood.
Allee Bleue has a few specials running this winter and they're well worth the drive. Jazzed Up Sundays offers a winning combination: a generous lunch buffet with live music for only R145 a person (R85 for kids under 10). If you prefer a lighter meal then you can opt for the Winter Hotties 'plat du jour' menu at just R75 a plate. The Hotties include Braised Oxtail with Potato Mash and Vegetables, Prawn Curry with Rice and Vegetables and more.
Grande Provence Heritage Wine Estate
If you're heading to Franschhoek this weekend to attend the Bastille Festival, be sure to pop in at Grande Provence. The Gallery at Grande Provence will present an exhibition titled 'The French Connection', from 13 July, the first day of the Bastille Festival, until 28 July 2012. Grande Provence will also play host to a French wine tasting of wines from the Rhône-Alpes Region in France during Bastille.
A visit to Steenberg for me is always a whole day affair. Between the tasting room, recently opened Gorgeous by Graham Beck Bubbly bar and Catharina's restaurant there is simply too much to see and do. Catharina's winter warmer menu of three courses plus a glass of wine will also entice you to stay. Two courses cost R185 per person and dinner is three courses for R250. (Available Monday to Saturday for lunch and dinner, until end of September.)
Or if you'd rather stay home and hibernate, be sure to check out our Big Red flyer for some yummy wines you can enjoy at home.