FOOD AND WINE: Indulge the senses with a visit to Bot Rivier. Picture: Marsel Roodman
FOOD AND WINE: Indulge the senses with a visit to Bot Rivier. Picture: Marsel Roodman

Kaleidoscope of country-style fun

By Bianca Coleman Time of article published Sep 5, 2017

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We recently spent a weekend in the Bot Rivier area. The drive from Cape Town is on the N2 and as you go over the top of the Houwhoek pass, you are greeted with rolling field of almost-luminous yellow fields of canola in full bloom.

Contrasted against drought-defying emerald green, this spectacle bears out the headline of the press release: “Bot Rivier explodes with colour for 2017 Spring Weekend”, which takes place today and tomorrow, promising a kaleidoscope of wine, food and country-style fun. Like the rainbow theme this year, the people of this Overberg town have lined up a spectrum of activities to showcase the best of their region.

“The wineries of Bot Rivier are truly a welcoming community and the Spring Weekend is one of our favourite occasions to showcase our farms and the riches to be found on them,” Melissa Nelsen of Genevieve MCC, said.

“This is what makes Bot Rivier a real rainbow village, a place we're proud to call our home. And this is what our Over The Rainbow Spring Weekend is all about. It's a celebration of the diversity of our village in all its magnificent colour and swag.”

The wineries will each represent a colour of the rainbow, with a few liberties over which we will not quibble. They include newcomers to the Bot Rivier wine family - Arcangeli Family Vineyards, Barton Vineyards, Villion Wines, Luddite Wines, Genevieve MCC, Beaumont Family Wines, Gabrielskloof Wine Estate, Rivendell Estate & Vineyards, Paardenkloof Estate and Maremmana Estate.

Arcangeli Wines (violet) will have a BARolo wine bar with an Italian-South African twist. It’s orange for the vines at Barton Wines, which will dish up a smorgasbord of fun from burgers to paintball, wine blending to tractor rides.

Enter the wine blending competition and stand a chance to win a two-night stay in one of the Barton Villas. Having spent the night in one of these magnificent houses, I can tell you this is a prize you definitely want to win.

Wildekrans goes pretty in pink, serving its MCC Brut Rosé as you enter its gates. Enjoy a light meal at the wine tasting room or something more formal at Forage; bring the children for tractor rides and the jungle gym.

Villion Family Wines waves a big red flag. Book your table and don’t forget comfortable shoes for the Spit & Skoffel dinner dance tonight from 7.30pm. There will be Overberg lamb on the spit, complimentary wines on the tables, and a wine bar. Tickets for the three-course dinner, wines and dance are R385 a person. 

Luddite takes on silver, which is fitting for the sterling wines and sublime experience awaiting visitors. In addition to latest vintage releases - including the Saboteur White 2017 - there will be the food truck run by Jason from the eponymous Cape Town bakery. Beaumont Family Wines lays claim to blue. Think how you’ll feel if you fail to book for the vertical tasting of the Hope Marguerite, a Chenin Blanc.

Genevieve MCC will be decked out in a celebratory turquoise to present breakfast with bubbles at its new home - Klein Botrivier Farm on the Karwyderskraal Road. Grub’s up at 9am till 11.30am today and tomorrow, and tickets are R200 through Quicket or [email protected] You can pop in for a tasting, learn to sabrage a bottle like a cavalry rider and linger longer with cheese and charcuterie platters.

Mellow yellow is the colour of Gabriëlskloof Estate, a, family-friendly destination surrounded by wheat and canola fields for most of the year. The restaurant menu will be inspired by spices and heritage cooking with mealies, curried fish, bobotie and the like. Under-12s eat for free from the children’s menu.

For Rivendell Estate & Vineyards, there’s the shimmer of gold and the promise of a royal experience. Settle in for a long lunch and wall-to-ceiling views of the vineyards and mountains, to enjoy its wine and canapé tasting plate. The essence of the season is reflected in green - the colour for Paardenkloof Ecology Lifestyle Farm - where there will be wine tasting and a festival of fynbos in its Garden Restaurant and farm market.

From 5pm today and tomorrow the evenings will be filled with live jazz, pizza and sundowners: tickets are R180 a person and must be booked by contacting [email protected] or 079 504 3593.

Sundowners will be served up at Maremmana Polo Estate. The rainbow bar opens this evening at 5pm, till 7.30pm. Tickets cost R100 a person and can be purchased, along with tickets to individual events, at unless otherwise specified. The weekend pass includes an armband and wine glass, which you can collect at the Bot Rivier tourism office. Quicket stations will also be at Beaumont, Gabriëlskloof, and Wildekrans on the weekend. Under-18s enter for free.

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