We leave the Century City Mall and head North East along Hwy 1 towards Paarl. The city peters out and within a half hour we’re in a valley surrounded by a number of mountains in a sort of horseshoe pattern. The South African countryside continues to impress.
Easy to find, Fairview Winery is nestled in the middle of this great scenery. We park up and are greeted by a handsome young goat on a bridge.
There’s a fun goat tower by the entrance and we watch these guys politely nudge each other out of the way as they go up and down the ramp. Why are goats so funny?
Nice grounds and scenery, Fairview is shaping up to be a good stop. Inside is a gorgeous blend of stone, wood and vines to accompany a long room with wine barrel aesthetic islands for tasting and a small shop with wine, cheese, deli meats and drinks.
We get set up with a girl named Carmen for a tasting and she hands us a sheet with some details. For flights we can go Classic or Pioneer, 6 wines in each and they’re paired with cheeses that are also made by Fairview. Well well. We choose to go the Classic route since it has a Pinotage varietal native to South Africa that we’d like to try.
Carmen lands a cheese and olive oil spread that looks killer.
As we’re getting our first round of wine presented an all girls school team comes in and fills out the rest of the island. Reading the track jacket that their coach is wearing this appears to be the Sevenoaks female field hockey team. Their age ranges are from 16 to 18 so half of them are drinking age and half aren’t. The girls at our island get wine tastings while the rest of them stand around a neighboring island and get non-alcoholic bullshit beverages. Kind of a funny excursion for a team.
Time for a team pic!
The quality of the wines and cheese are excellent. Here’s a sample of our spread.
The Pinotage and Bloemcool Tempranillo are the stand-outs. The Bloemcool bottle is made from totally recycled materials. Carmen tells us that you can plant the label since it’s made from cauliflower seeds and might even get some homegrown cauliflower out of it. “Wow, you just blew my mind.”
We’re halfway through and the table of 16 and 17 year olds are total over it already. They’re just milling about checking out the room while their coach rushes over to their table and just starts pounding all the left over cheese haha. He’s rapid fire toothpicking every single piece of cheese on all of their plates, it’s hilarious to watch. I’ve never seen someone blitz a full round of 72 cheese bites before, I’m not sure what the rush is but man is it funny.
While Cheese Monster is snacking we’re catching snippets from the 18 year olds tasting notes. Can’t help but laugh when this golden nugget gets dropped, “It’s a bit too mature for my palette. I’m used to energy drinks and squash.” Hard not to crack overhearing this. We start adding our own ridiculous comments just to see if they notice, “Tastes like toothpicks burning by a poodle farm.”
As we’re finishing up we ask Carmen if she’d recommend any other places nearby or a good stop for lunch. She says the Spice Route is great for tastings, food, diamonds and chocolate. Great, Spice Route it is. We’ll also take the Pinotage, por favor.
On the way out we hit the shop for some cheeses that stood out in the tasting. The cheddar bobotie was deadly and they know it, there’s a full display of the white and orange right at the entrance.
We say goodbye to the Fairview Goats. Thank you majestic goats, your establishment is the bees knees.
This Gandalf looking goat demands your respect.
Cute lil goat house
Peter checks the solar panel on the roof for damage after our run in with the 2.5 meter yellow beam in Century City. Everything seems in place and undamaged.
We hang a moment longer in the parking lot to kill a couple fresh beers we picked up at the Fairview Market and laugh at the goats some more. A security guard seems a little too interested in us. Is it the beers? Nope, it’s the truck. He swings by to say hi and ask about it. Yeah, it’s badass alright.
I slam a high octane cold brew coffee in prep for the drive ahead. On to the Spice Route!