You don’t have to be a sommelier or even fabulous wine fundi to enjoy the Cape’s world-famous wines. Even better, some of the region’s finest vineyards are literally around the corner from Waterland Lodge so there is no need to travel any distance to taste and enjoy the many different variants and cultivars when staying with on Waterland’s private estate situated in Hout Bay.
Constantia, South Africa’s oldest wine producing region, is situated ten minutes away from Hout Bay and is less than 20 minutes from the Cape Town city centre. Whether you are self-driving, using Uber, booking a bus tour or making use of Hout Bay’s chauffeur driven services you can spend the day at leisure, at lunch, or simply just loving the region’s burgeoning variety of wine selections from both working vineyards and cellar outlets to enjoy with a meal or to take back home with you for even longer lasting memories.
Pick one or visit them all, but don’t miss the chance to experience some truly sublime labels from these top local estates offering wine-tasting experiences in elegance and refinement.
Just a stone’s throw away from Waterland is Beau Constantia on your way up Constantia Nek in the direction of Constantia. A small boutique wine farm overlooking False Bay, Beau Constantia vines are planted to an elevation of 350 metres above sea-level on some of the steepest agricultural slopes in the Cape. Here, lovingly nurtured vines are spoilt with panoramic views of the Stellenbosch and Helderberg Mountain ranges and over False Bay as far as Hangklip and offer a variety in impressive and complex vines. Its selection of cultivated varieties include Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Shiraz and Petit Verdot.
Famous for: Contemporary liquid luxury in ocean-chilled vines.
Where: Beau Constantia Wine Farm, Main Road, Constantia
Contact: +27 21 794 8632
Arriving at Hout Bay Vineyards, you are met by Peter and Cathy who own the winery and are proud producers of their maiden vintage. With a respectable portfolio of wines which includes a Bordeaux blend, Merlot, Shiraz, a blush made from the grapes also used in their MCC bubbly Klasiek, Sauvignon Blanc and a Port, they also offer a dessert wine in their burgeoning pipeline. Open days at the winery fall in May and December, but call ahead and make an appointment to visit, taste, delight in and buy their wines.
Famous for: wines, bubbly, port, winefarm honey and cold pressed olive oil.
Where: Hout Bay Vineyards, High Meadows Estate, Grotto Road, Hout Bay
Contact: +27 83 790 4303
Cradled in a secluded valley high up on the slopes of the Constantia mountains, the farm originally served as a refreshment station for travellers on the mountain pass between Wynberg and Hout Bay harbour. Devastating fires destroyed most of the farm in 2000, save for its historic buildings. It has since been turned into an esteemed wine estate, known for its award-winning reds.
Famous for: Quality and consistency combined with passionate attention to detail in the vineyards.
Where: Old Constantia Main Road, Constantia
Contact: +27 21 794 4095
Nurtured by the cool breezes of the Atlantic Ocean on its doorstep, the farm is perfectly situated to produce award winning white wines. Boasting panoramic views of the mountainous Cape Peninsula, this is also horse country with a distinct equestrian flavour to leafy Noordhoek village perched between the estate and the Atlantic coastline. The farm offers a restaurant and function venue and holds a popular local food market on Thursday evening’s perfect to compile your own varity of food pairings.
Famous for: World-class Sauvignon Blanc that is strong in minerality and complexity.
Where: Silvermine Road, Noordhoek.
Contact: +27 21 789 0900
For the last 20 years, the Christodoulou family have been producing a boutique, hand-made and highly sought after Methode Cap Classique sparkling wine. Their bubbly is released on two annual sale days, with a new addition release taking place on the 4th November 2017. All sales are on a first come first serve basis and stock is limited so make sure you get there early!
Famous for: High quality Methode Cap Classique sparkling wine in the traditional French method.
Where: 4075 Valley Road, Hout Bay
Contact: +27 82 4608399
Constantia Glen is ideally located below Constantia Nek, it is a working farm with a range of tasting options ranging from R45 to R75 per person, depending on your wine selection. They have recently added a selection of Flammkuchen to their current repertoire of tasting experiences. Enjoy one of their popular Cheese & Charcuterie Platters to accompany their award-winning wines or kick start your day a bit earlier, with a delicious Breakfast Croissants with scrambled egg and a choice of Alpen Speck or Smoked Trout served daily until noon. Bookings for tastings is recommended.
Famous for: Their wine and chocolate pairing or finish your tasting experience with one of their mouth-watering new desserts.
Where: Main Road, Constantia
Contact: +27(0)21 795 5639
Here, David van Niekerk uses his passion and expertise to restore High Constantia to its former winemaking glory from the newly planted vineyards. High Constantia’s gracious past is echoed with renewed vigour in the variety of elegant wines once again produced by this historical estate.
Famous for: its history dating back to 1693 when the farm was part of the Dutch East India Company outpost known as Wittebomen, named after its silver leaf trees.
Where: Groot Constantia Road, Constantia
Contact: +27 21 794 7171
A South Africa’s oldest wine producing estate, Groot Constantia’s illustrious history shares some of original accounts of how the Cape became such a proficient and successful wine-producing industry over its 300 years of existence. Since Commander Simon van der Stel’s first arrival with the Dutch East India Company to establish the Cape as a supply station in 1679, Constantia wines became and have continued to be renowned in Europe and then later around the globe. Don’t miss an opportunity to visit and capture some of the rich and diverse heritage of South Africa and its unique cultural, social and historical past, together with its offerings of world-class, quality wines. Open seven days a week, pop in for one of their guided cellar tours, which includes a wine tasting.
Famous for: birthing the Cape as a world-class wine-producing area and its rich history dating back to 1679.
Where: Groot Constantia Road, Constantia.
Contact: +27 21 794 5128
Klein Constantia’s 146-hectare estate originally formed part of Constantia, established by Simon van der Stel in 1679, who chose the valley not only for its beauty but also for its decomposed granite soils on slopes gently cooled by ocean breezes, producing a sweet wine which was celebrated by wine collectors and wine lovers of the time. The arrival of phylloxera in the Cape in the 1800s nearly devastated the estate however, and it was only 1980 when Duggie Jooste re-established the vineyards and returned the estate to its former glory. It now produces a celebrated dessert wine and a range of award-winning dry wines – all made possible by the ideal growing conditions first identified by Van der Stel so many years ago.
Famous for: its beauty and ideal vine growing conditions.
Where: Klein Constantia Wine Estate, Klein Constantia Road, Constantia.
Contact: +27 21 794 5188
Buitenverwachting, meaning ‘beyond expectation’ lies on the east-facing slopes of the Constantiaberg mountain range and has continued to product world-class wines ever since its first 90 000 vines were planted in 1825. Today the Mueller family has restored the farm to its former glory with extensive planting of selected cultivars to produce internationally acclaimed wines of great complexity. It’s restaurant is situated in the original thatch covered and white washed Cape Dutch building and forms part of the historic werf of Buitenverwachting. Of note, is the bespoke jewellery manufacturing offices of Maack and Martin situated on the estate which forms part of the wine tour, together with the convenience of picnic facilities on its landscaped grounds. Buitenverwachting is not open on a Sunday.
Famous for: wines of complexity with unique aromatic profiles.
Where: Klein Constantia Road, Constantia.
Contact: +27 21 7945190
Steenberg Wine Estate offers visitors a selection of wine tasting experiences, with a Wine Tasting Bar, Tasting Lounge and Outdoor Terrace to choose from. With infinity pools and reflective water features set before some of the most remarkable scenery in Cape Town, it also boasts the 5-Star Steenberg Hotel, with buildings lovingly restored and declared a National Monument. At it’s award-winning Catharina’s Restaurant or Bistro Sixteen82, guests can enjoy tapas and bistro-style dining alongside some of the finest Sauvignon Blanc in South Africa, together with several other celebrated varietals. A visually spectacular and technically challenging 18-hole golf course features as part of the beautiful scenery at Steenberg Farm making is a complete destination to visitors wanting to explore the southern regions of the area on any day of the week.
Famous for: it’s wines, 5-star hotel and 18-hole golf course.
Where: Steenberg Estate, Steenberg Road, Tokai.
Contact: +27 21 713 2211
Not sure where to start?
Speak to Grant Viljoen at Waterland for a personal recommendation to suit your specific tastes or to view and discuss his choice selection of wines made available for purchase whilst booked overnight at Waterland.