Wine tasting at 10 am in the morning. Every wine lover’s dream, right? This was how our first day on holiday in Cape Town started two weeks ago (if you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, you would have seen my roadtrip updates). We hopped in the car and headed out to our first destination of the day, bright and early, on a beautiful morning in Cape Town. The air was cool and crisp, and the sun warm, baking our legs in the car as we arrived at Groot Constantia wine estate in Cape Town.
P.S. I really don’t know much about wine (I just love drinking it). I got all the information shared in this blog post from our lovely host.
Groot Constantia is the oldest wine producing estate in South Africa – one of the reasons why I chose to visit this estate over the many options available in the city and its surrounds. It was also close to our accommodation, making it easy to get to our destination without having to travel for a long period of time or sit in traffic (if you’ve ever experienced Cape Town traffic, you’ll know what I mean!). As you drive through the gates, you’re welcomed to a breathtaking scene of vineyards to the left, with the wine estate’s Cape Dutch Manor House set on the right. This is where our wine tasting journey began.
There are a number of wine tasting options available. Groot Constantia’s tasting experiences include a wine tasting, and a chocolate and wine pairing. Seeing as it was already so early in the day to drink wine (never mind eat chocolate), we opted for the wine tasting experience. With this particular experience, you get to taste five of the estate’s wines. The package is R80 per person and you get to take your wine glass home with you as a souvenir.
Arnold and I aren’t familiar with Groot Contantia’s wines, so we decided to sample both red and white wines (we’re both red wine drinkers). We started with the Sauvignon Blanc 2017. The wine boasts gooseberry, sweet melon and fig flavours, and it was fruity and refreshing. While I don’t drink white wine often, when I do drink whites I prefer Sauvignon Blanc, and this one was a very nice, easy-drinking Sauvignon Blanc.
Next on the list was the 2017 Chardonnay. Our host told us that this particular wine is very citrusy and she was right – it was even more fruity than the Sauvignon Blanc. She said that when you drink this wine, you typically get the same taste as that of the white part inside the peel of an orange (which I totally agreed with). According to the information we were given, this is an excellent food wine.
After this, it was time to try the red wines. We started with the 2016 Constantia Rood. This was by far our favourite red wine of the day, and we purchased a bottle before we left. It was a smooth, easy-drinking wine with ripe black plum, dark chocolate and red cherry flavours. She said that this is a wine that will get better with age, so I think we’ll hold onto the bottle we bought for a year or two (if we can wait that long of course).
Next we tried the 2016 Merlot – a rich and ripe red wine. Our host described the wine as an elegant one, and this word really does capture the essence of the wine. I quite enjoyed this one but Arnold wasn’t quite convinced, but if you enjoy a glass of Merlot every now and then, I would recommend this wine.
For our last tasting, we couldn’t decide between the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon and the 2015 Shiraz, so our host graciously gave me the Shiraz and Arnold the Cabernet Sauvignon so that we could try both. The Cabernet Sauvignon had hints of black currant and ripe cherry flavours, while the Shiraz was very fruity. I thought I would prefer the Shiraz over the Cabernet Sauvignon, but the Cabernet Sauvignon was the winner. I would describe this wine as a lovely full-bodied wine perfect for a grown up ‘kuier’ with friends on a Friday night.
Overall, our experience at Groot Constantia was wonderful and we thoroughly enjoyed the wine tasting. I’ll definitely have to visit again so that I can try the chocolate and wine pairing!