This weekend I convinced five friends to join me at Franschhoek uncorked, and we had a fantastic day. This was the first year of the Uncorked festival and it’s difficult to review this festival is it is not centralised. Each estate organises some sort of activity or theme for the enjoyment of the visitors. We did not even make it into Franschoek so I don’t know if anything special was happening in the town itself. We decided to check out the vibe at Lynx estate as they had a spanish fiesta theme with tapas and live spanish music (a recipe for a good party). On the way we stopped at Solms Delta because I wanted to check out the picnic spot I have heard so much about, plus I was keen to have a look at their new restaurant, Fyndraai.
The picnic spot is pretty good, amongst the trees and next to the stream. Very tranquil, with the pleasant sounds of birds chirping and the stream rushing along. You can order picnics from the restaurant. We did some al fresco wine tasting which is a great idea on a lovely day. It’s a waste to be inside a dark cellar tasting wine when the sun is shining outside. All of the tables share a lovely view of the vineyards and the mountains. This area is also the al fresco section of Fyndraai restaurant, so an awesome option for al fresco lunch. The restaurant looks very interesting, the floor is glass and below are shallow archeological excavations. The area is apparently full of historical artefacts. I’d love to see the restaurant at night, it will be stunning.
After wine tasting, we headed off to Lynx estate. I had never heard of it to be honest, and I realised why. You have to take the R301 to the left before you hit Franschhoek (something I’d never done). We met Rob from Haut Espoir there and he introduced me to Dieter Sellmeyer, the winemaker. Rob tells me that Dieter is passionate about farming and producing wine in an environentally friendly way, which makes me like Lynx wines before even trying them. When I did try them, I liked them even more! The Voigner is amazing and the Rosado went down a treat all afternoon.
We tried all the different tapas and enjoyed the live spanish guitar music, all while basking on the sunshine and appreciating the lovely view of the vineyards backed by mountains. We arrive there at 1pm and only left after 6pm. It was a great day.
Hi Dax – don’t think this is the festival’s first year, as I went last year and loved it. Last year my favourite spot was Boekenhouts Kloof (what an awesome venue!) where Reuben was making the most awesome barbeque – loved it. It rained cats and dogs while we watched fabulous jazz the band was playing infront of huge windows looking down onto the farm with the rain lashing onto them, drinking their Chocolate Box wine (mmm) – it was awesome! sorry i missed it this year, planned to go but was a bit worn out after Rocking the Daisies, alas! will definitely be there next year!
I think this is one of the most reasonable and well organized festivals I have experienced to date and I have been to many. Loved the vibe, every farm we stopped at (we did route B) had great entertainment, prompt wine tasting service and delicious food options. Lynx was also an unknown pleasant surprise for us. My highlight was Graham Beck; champagne, sushi and live jazz on the sprawling lawn…sublime.
Correct. I think it’s the third Uncorked as I think the first one (very soggy) was in 2007 – which I went to. If anything, they’ve change the timing so it isn’t in the middle of winter.
Dax, am relinquishing my spots for the Botrivier weekend, if you + 1 are interested. (Deposited paid to Andrea)
BTW – if you’re reading the God Delusion, here is an interesting series from The Meeting House (the ‘church’ I was attending in Toronto – http://www.themeetinghouse.ca/) that includes a sermon/lecture/analysis/retort etc. to the book: http://www.themeetinghouse.ca/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=121&Itemid=3 (e.g. “Adventures in Missing the Point”)
Why would I take your opinion on Franschhoek’s Festival (or anything else you write) seriously when you are tweeting about 9/11 being a “inside job”?
What a loon.