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Biltong & All That’s Good

Two locals taken their love for biltong and droëwors and turned it into a small business: Village Biltong & Deli.

Owner Herman du Plessis and shop manager Bets TerBlanche decided early on that they would only stock hand-selected, premium biltong products that are ethically sourced. “Our beef product suppliers rear their livestock with care and no steroids or growth hormones are given. You can taste the difference,” says Herman.

Town and gown unite against COVID-19

FLTR: Maties SRC Chair Xola Njengele, Stellenbosch University Rector and Vice-Chancellor Prof Wim de Villiers, Stellenbosch Executive Mayor Adv Gesie van Deventer and Visit Stellenbosch CEO Jeanneret Momberg in the town’s iconic Victoria Street, which runs through the University’s campus. Key town-and-gown stakeholders are taking coming together in a campaign against COVID-19. (Photo: Stefan Els)

If we all work together, we can minimise the coronavirus risk, protect lives and livelihoods, and safeguard the success of the academic project. WIM DE VILLIERS (Rector and Vice-Chancellor of Stellenbosch University and Chair of Higher Health)

Stellenbosch and surrounding towns have of late become busier again in the runup to the formal start of our academic year on 15 March 2021. The return of students and staff may be a thrilling prospect for businesses, but some fears have also been expressed around COVID-19. Let me explain our approach, in collaboration with other role-players in our university town.

Capitalworks acquires Brait’s majority shareholding in DGB

New DGB CEO Ricardo Ferreira and outgoing CEO Tim Hutchinson

The South African asset management company Capitalworks and businessman Tim Hutchinson – long-time head of the liquor company DGB – have acquired DGB’s majority shareholding held by Brait, the JSE-listed independent investment company, for an undisclosed sum.

DGB is a leading SA producer and distributor of wine and spirits to the local and international markets.

‘Prisoners’ in pass accident

Emergency services staged an accident scenario to test their preparedness.

“MVA FHK PASS”, is an all-too-familiar message sent out on local WhatsApp groups. On Wednesday, 29 November, the Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) was however the start of a multi-agency exercise involving Stellenbosch Fire and Rescue Services, SAPS Franschhoek, Western Cape Metro Rescue Services, Winelands District Fire Services, Stellenbosch Traffic Services, Department of Correctional Services, Stellenbosch private and public hospitals, ER24 and local paramedics Garth Van Zyl (Medicare EMR) and Kurt Maske.

Franschhoek at Decorex

Stuart Douglas, Cindy Douglas and Vuyisa Potina at the Potina Ceramics stand at Decorex Cape Town 2022.

Three Franschhoek creative businesses took part in Decorex Cape Town 2022 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre form 16 – 19 June 2022.

#FlattenTheCurve: Stellenbosch Municipality COVID-19 update

The Stellenbosch Municipality is working hard to prevent and combat the spread of the Corona virus. With this in mind we already took the first essential steps on Monday, in accordance with the President’s decision to declare a national state of disaster. Every decision we make is in the interest of PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY.

The Stellenbosch Municipality has taken the following steps:

  • Community and Protection Services have cancelled all event and gathering applications where 100 people or more are expected.
  • All municipal halls, sport grounds, multipurpose centres, picnic sites, community halls, swimming pools, nature reserves and other municipal amenities will be closed until further notice.
  • Driver License Testing and Learner License Testing will go ahead as scheduled for now. All necessary safety precautions have been put in place.
  • Residents are being encouraged to phone, email or send a WhatsApp to engage with the Municipality or their local councillor instead of visiting a municipal office in person, to limit direct physical contact (all relevant contact information is on our website).
  • Library operating hours will be reduced incrementally and these facilities will provide only basic services, namely, taking out and returning reading material. The number of persons allowed into the library will be controlled. Needless to say, this might change at short notice.

All non-essential travel for all spheres of government to areas outside of the Republic is stopped and domestic travel is restricted.

The municipality will provide hand sanitizers or wipes at building entrances to be used to disinfect hands when entering facilities.
Public meetings that were scheduled to begin next month, have been cancelled. Electronic, written and telephonic submissions will be encouraged. We are also currently exploring alternative electronic platforms for public participation.
These emergency measures have also forced us to postpone several events, including a title deed handover ceremony as well as the annual Mayoral Golf day.

We will continue to work with our National and Provincial partners to ensure that measures are in place to curb the spread of the virus. Limiting physical and social contact is essential in curbing the spread of the virus. I therefore urge residents to help us curb the spread of the virus by doing the following:

  • Limit social gatherings and meetings wherever possible. If you meet with friends or family, please limit the number of people gathering.
  • ocial distancing is imperative – keep a distance of at least 1 meter between you and the next person, especially in public spaces; do not shake hands or hug when greeting one another, minimize physical contact.
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Sanitize your hands and surfaces with an effective sanitizing product.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and throw it away after use
  • Take additional vitamins to boost your immune system·
  • Avoid crowded areas.

Please be aware of scammers posing as health practitioners to gain unlawful access to properties. There have been several reports of criminals approaching people, claiming to be health workers from various institutions pretending to conduct home testing for COVID-19.

We encourage residents to please pay attention to official announcements, and follow the instructions being given. Fake or inaccurate information remains a challenge. We urge all residents not to participate in the distribution of inaccurate, unverified or false information. Spreading fake news on The Corona is now a punishable offence and if found guilty you can spend up to 6 months in jail, as detailed in the Government Gazette, published yesterday. Please consult official sources if you have any doubts or concerns. For official COVID-19 advice, updates and queries:

National Hotline 0800 029 999
WhatsApp 0600 123 456
Provincial Hotline 021 9284102

We are aware that the outbreak of COVID-19 will present a challenging time for our region as it will have an adverse effect on our thriving tourism and hospitality industries. We urge every business owner to act in the best interest of our community and to adhere to the restrictions and guidelines outlined by national government.

“I call on all residents to stay calm during this time of crisis. Please act with kindness and consideration towards all citizens, and be mindful that social isolation will be challenging for many people. Please check in on your loved ones via electronic communication, and please do not panic buy as it contributes to a stressful environment during this difficult time.” – said Mayor van Deventer

We will continuously share information and updates on our municipal website and social media pages.

Pearl Valley a top five course – Golf Digest

Pearl Valley Golf Course

Golf Digest recently announced that Pearl Valley, Val de Vie Estate’s Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course, has been ranked as the 5th best golf course in the country. The course was also ranked as the Best Conditioned Golf Course in the Western Cape.

The biennial ‘Golf Digest Top 100 Courses in South Africa’ is one of the most influential rankings as far as golf in South Africa is concerned, and Val de Vie Estate takes great pride in the 2018/2019 top five placement. Two years ago, Pearl Valley was ranked at number 8 by Golf Digest, and this marked improvement is mostly attributed to Val de Vie Estate amalgamating with Pearl Valley Estate in 2016.

Robertsvlei to Theewaterskloof bypass?

A bypass around the village – especially for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) – has been discussed on and off for more than 20 years.  Lately, it has emerged from discussions between stakeholders that the provincial government has become more favourably disposed towards the idea.

Planning for the bypass centres on the Robertsvlei Road. This means that HGVs, and other road users that so choose, will be diverted off the R45 onto the Robertsvlei Road and re-join traffic at the Huguenot Monument intersection.  This proposal would involve paving the Robertsvlei Road, construction of a new dual lane bridge over the Franschhoek River and various other road improvements.

Winemaker Dinners the Ultimate Winter Treat

Mont Rochelle manor house at night.

Mont Rochelle’s winemaker dinners are the ultimate winter treat for wine lovers and foodies alike.

With relaxed and intimate, Miko, providing the perfect  backdrop -the monthly “Winemaker Dinner” series, is fast becoming legendary in the Franschhoek Valley.

The Winemaker Dinners invite guests to interact with esteemed winemaker Dustin Osborne, alongside Estate Manager, James Basson who host these fun and informative evenings. The best selections of Mont Rochelle wines, as well as premium and museum wine ( including Gold Award Winner in the London Wine Competition- Miko Red 2010 – the only South African wine to receive this honour), are paired with a  delicious 5-course menu prepared by Head Chef Shane Louw. Expect delicacies such as, a welcome Canapé of poached Saldanha Bay oyster with candied apple and caper berry foam; Cured Franschhoek trout, spiced tomato blatjang, smoked salmon cream and crispy kale ; Wild mushroom risotto with parmesan cream; Pan fried springbok loin with cranberry gel, sumac roasted carrots and creamed potatoes with a straw wine jus; Beef fillet, gorgonzola dauphinoise, roasted baby beets with a mulberry jus and for dessert Dark chocolate fondant with a mixed berry compote .

After an evening of indulgence, guests are encouraged to take up the ‘stay 3 nights for price of 2” offer on Mont Rochelle’s luxury accommodation special. Available for new bookings from 1 May – 30 September 2019, based on double occupancy including daily breakfast, a selection of drinks and snacks from the minibar, wireless internet and all taxes and local levies.

These one-of-a-kind Winemaker Dinner evenings are priced at R750 per person and take place on the last Thursday of every month. Spaces are limited and advance bookings are recommended.


Cape of Good Hope Wines – Treasuring Vinous Heritage

Riebeeksrivier Syrah is the ideal choice with classic Cape Tomato Bredie.

With an impressive wine portfolio, the noblest in the Anthonij Rupert Wyne collection is the Cape of Good Hope range, which forms part of South Africa’s Old Vines Initiative.

Made from some of the oldest South African vines, the Cape of Good Hope range comprises terroir-specific wines created in celebration of South Africa’s 350-year-old vinous heritage. The first vintage was launched in 2011, which led to the establishment of the Old Vines Initiative, initiated in 2007 by Johann Rupert.

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