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And the Gold Goes To…

It was a good day for Mont Rochelle Mountain Vineyards when the awards were announced at the London Wine Competition 2019. Not only did three of their wines win awards, their Miko Red 2010 was the only South African wine to win a Gold Award at the competition.

Mont Rochell’s Miko White 2016 and Syrah 2015 each received Bronze Awards.

The awards are the ultimate seal of approval in the global wine industry. The judging panel consists of 11 Masters of Wine, including many senior sommeliers from some of London’s most accredited restaurants, buyers and traders.

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.


Proteas of The Valley Campaign Honours Local Women

The inspirational Proteas of the Valley ladies for 2018 were: From left to right, bottom to top: Simone Pheko, Carol Lakay, Linda Neethling, Lea Coetzee, Marizaan Bredenkamp and Cathy Sias. Mariëtte Jacobs, Moira Adriaanse, Christinne Sonne, Jacqueline Abrahams, Nolubabalo Magocoba, Carin Venter and Annina Marais. Wendy Claasen, Shevon Brymer, Simone Killian, Songelwa Sicuku-Mkita, Aletia Grundling and Jennifer Arendse. Nandi Myburgh, Karin Keys, Alvira Kleinhans, Nomhle Lucy Mbenenge, Elzabé Broekmann, Leigh Reabow, Erica Seas and Esmarelda Patton. Not pictured: Lenie Borrings, Henrietta Scholtz, Mia du Preez and Siena Charles.

August is National Women’s Month and Valcare will once again be honouring the fierce females who make the Cape Winelands a better place. Those inspirational women who flourish and flower despite difficult, dry and harsh circumstances – just like proteas.

We’re talking about the hope carriers, the impact champions and the change agents. The grandmothers, mothers, wives and daughters. The business women, social workers, teachers, entrepreneurs, nurses, volunteers, teachers, administrators and creatives. Every woman who is flowering beautifully where she has been planted.

Between 3 June and 9 July 2019 community members are invited to identify and nominate these women that are somehow making a positive impact in the lives of others; from Stellenbosch to Franschhoek, Paarl and Wellington and all the areas in between.

To nominate, please go to www.valcare.org.za/proteas-of-the-valley to complete the online nomination form or collect a printed form from the Valcare office in 10 Verster Street, Paarl, during their office hours.

Worldwine Women Explore Franschhoek Wine Valley

The Worldwine Women during their February visit to the valley.

During February Franschhoek Wine Valley hosted four dynamic young women, who aptly referred to themselves as the Worldwine Women. This group of student friends– Alice, Louise, Alexandra and Atalante – have made it their mission to explore vineyards across the globe with the goal of analysing the emerging balance between tradition and innovation. In order to do so they work in vineyards in each of the countries that they visit so as to personally experience different production methods, traditional local skills as well as cultural environments.

Eager to experience what the valley has to offer in terms of wine production the group spent time with the women winemakers of Haut Espoir, La Bri, GlenWood Vineyards, My Wyn, Holden Manz and Anthonij Rupert Wyne.

March Cinemagic in the Franschhoek Valley

The Galileo Open Air Cinema is a fantastic opportunity for family fun.

There are only two months left of the Galileo Open Air Cinema’s current season. That’s the bad news. The good news is that there are two screening in the Franschhoek Valley during March.

On Saturday, 2 March, La Paris Estate will host a screening of Pretty Woman and on Saturday, 16 March Anna Karenina will be screened at the Huguenot Museum.

Exquisite views, tranquil settings, interactive games, a fabulous selection of vino and gourmet market goodies are just a few of the “extras” you can look forward to when doors open at 17h00. Once you’ve drooled over the magnificent sunset and nestled up to your partner, friends, or even just your bottle of pinotage, the stars come out, and the movie begins.

Visit www.thegalileo.co.za to book your tickets, or to check out their full movie schedule which also includes weekly screenings around Cape Town.

Ticket prices:

Standard: R89

Warm: R97 (plus blanket)

Comfy: R105 (plus backrest)

Warm & comfy: R110 (plus blanket and backrest)

VIP: R175 (Reserved premium seating, blanket, backrest, popcorn, Coca-Cola and Frey chocolate)

Snuggle: R320 per couple (Reserved area with mattress, blankets x2, pillows x2 and Frey chocolate)

Herb and Wine Pairing a Fresh New Activity at Allée Bleue

Five wines and five unique herb creations make up Franschhoek-based Allée Bleue Estate’s unique new pairing experience which highlights two of the farm’s main products – herbs and wine.

Allée Bleue Estate near Franschhoek is not only known for their wine, food and hospitality but also for their range of fresh herbs which is supplied to Western Cape retailers on a daily basis.

To celebrate the herbs and wine the Estate has come up with a fresh new idea to offer a unique experience combining these two products in the tasting room.

Rustenburg pair take TransCape title at Holden Manz

Rustenburg riders Justin van de Linde (left) and Albertus Jooste won the final 70km stage of the Liberty TransCape MTB Encounter from Grabouw to Franschhoek on Sunday, 10 February, to take the overall honours. The seven-stage mountain-bike race started in George a week earlier. (Image: Jacques Marais)

Justin van der Linde and Albertus Jooste won the 70km final stage of the Liberty TransCape MTB Encounter from Grabouw to Franschhoek on Sunday, 10 February, to clinch the overall title for the first time.

The Rustenburg team began the last day of the 591km, seven-stage mountain-bike race with a handy cushion and completed a successful week by crossing the finish line at Holden Manz Wine Estate in 3:38:33.

Friday Braai Lunches at Miko Restaurant

Mont Rochelle Hotel’s Miko Restaurant is firing up the braai for summer. Every Friday lunchtime from 12h00 they are serving up a barbeque feast.

Whatever your dietary preferences there’s something for everyone: expect steak, boerewors, line fish, chicken thighs and more from the barbeque. Then help yourself to a selection of beautifully prepared salads from the salad table. Honey roasted carrots with feta and toasted pumpkin seeds and balsamic vinegar; Baked beetroot with orange segments and basil pesto; and Grilled aubergine with feta and marjoram dressing are just three of the many options.

Remember to try one of the traditional griddle cakes and to leave room for dessert! Choose from Grilled pineapple with coconut ice cream and Traditional malva pudding with Amurula cream. If you can’t make up your mind… try a bit of both!

Add some wine from the farm, or a little further afield, combine with great company and you have a recipe for a very ‘lekker’ local lunch.

R320 per person or R375 per person including ½ bottle of Little Rock Wine.

Available on Friday for lunch until 29th March 2019.

To find out more or to book a table, please call: 021 876 2770

Spoil Your Loved One At Allée Bleue This Valentines

If you want to spoil your loved one this year on Valentine’s Day you have three options at Allée Bleue!

We can whole-heartedly recommend the Picnic-on-the-Go in the beautifully manicured gardens at this Franschhoek Family Estate! Create your own love nest in a private spot for the two of you and glam it up with cushions, throws, picnic blankets and themed accessories to impress your other half.  We’ll provide the lavish love-themed picnic basket and the bubbly whilst you enjoy the sunset.

Alternatively the serviced seated picnic experience, the  Chicnic in our Picnic Courtyard should tick all the boxes – and it means you can just arrive to a setting ready for romance and save your energy to seduce.

The Picnic on the Go costs R675 for a basket for two whilst the Chicnic goes for R690.  Both picnics include a bottle of wine and a selection of hand-crafted chocolate truffles.   From 17h00 till 20h30.  Latest arrival at 18h30.  The Valentine’s Picnic basket menu’s are available on our website.  Bookings at the “Book Now” button on www.alleebleue.com

For the more traditional experience, Chef Gordon Dovey and his team had fun creating a romantic 5-course menu for Valentine’s dinner which features some favourites to share.   Start off with a  welcome drink and then treat yourself and your beloved to an evening under the stars (weather permitting)and food to impress.   Cost:  R385 pp.  Menu available on our website.  Bookings:  info@alleebleue.com

Seasonal Harvest Highlights Shared With Visitors To Allée Bleue

Roasted plum and smoked chicken salad.

Family-owned Allée Bleue Estate is primarily a working farm with nearly 80 hectares planted to fruit and olive trees adding to the tranquillity of the setting. The estate wines are justly famous, having won scores of awards over the years and the Allée Bleue fresh herb range is available from most large retailers in the Western Cape.

The farm produces peaches, nectarines, a variety of different plums, pears and most of the persimmons grown in South Africa. Much of the produce is exported, but locals can enjoy the fruit at selected retailers country-wide as well.

In 2019 Allée Bleue is inviting visitors to experience the seasons with them and share in the farm’s bounty as it is harvested.  Try out specially created dishes in the Bistro, buy fresh fruit at their public outlets and collect the monthly free recipe cards as they are released.

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