The West Coast Biodiversity Corridor is a rich, abundant and diverse area, beginning a mere 25 minutes from Cape Town on the scenic coastal R27 road, stretching from Blaauwberg Nature Reserve all the way to Saldanha Bay in the north and the Darling Hills in the east, this compact region is a veritable treasure trove of natural and cultural wonders.
Darling is between vineyards and golden wheat fields and has so much to offer, besides the flowers season after the winter rains, it is the perfect weekend getaway destination offering a wide variety of events, activities, from wine farms, olive farms, charming shops and cafes and the ever-popular Evita se Perron.
If you are looking for the wines of Darling all in one spot then visit Vygevallei Farm Stall and Wine House on the R27, just before !Khwa ttu.
Darling is one of the rising stars in the South African Wine Industry and boasts its own wine route and is the first wine producing district to be awarded the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative (BWI) membership status as a district, with all individual farms, including Cloof, Groote Post, Ormonde and Darling Cellars, achieving accreditation.
The Biodiversity and Wine Initiative aims to minimize the loss of natural habitats and contribute to sustainable wine production through better land management practices on the farms.
Groote Post is a historic 18th century farm and is owned by Peter & Nick Pentz, third and fourth generation farmers and has recently celebrated 10 years of wine making. With a long history of conservation they hope to become a BWI champion.
The farm produces the only Cap Classique and noble late harvest wines in the region. They received gold in the Vitis Vinifera Awards for their Kapokberg Sauvignon Blanc and the Groote Post Shiraz.
But it is not only about wine, Groote Post offers farm drives, a bird hide and a fabulous restaurant: Aunt Hilda’s Kitchen, where you can enjoy a delicious traditional meal or collect a picnic to enjoy on the farm.
Their popular monthly Country Market operates during the warmer months and will resume 30 August.
• Open 7 Days a week • Wine Tasting: FREE • Wine Sales • Visa/Credit card facilities • FREE Cellar Tour: Booking essential • Hilda’s Kitchen Restaurant: Booking Essential • Farm Rides: R170 p/adult, R75 p/child • Child Friendly • Bird Hide
Part of the Culture Route on the R27
When: Mon – Fri: 8:00 – 17:00 | Sat & Sun & public holidays: 10:00 – 16:00
Where: Darling Hills Road, Darling
Contact: +27 (0)22 492 2825 | [email protected] | www.grootepost.co.za
Darling Cellars is situated opposite the Mamre train station and offer a wide range of wines, from entry-level to acclaimed blends. Their award winning wines are available for tasting and they also offer informative tastings and cellar tours by appointment. In 2013 their Lime Kilns 2011 won Double Gold in the Vitis Vinifera, and their Sir Charles Henry Darling 2010 took Gold in the Michelangelo Awards.
A not to be missed event is the annual Darling Cellars Crush Day where the public are welcome to participate in the fun! Tractor-pulled wagons take the guests to the vineyards where they pick their own grapes; once picked, the fun begins… Back at the cellar, pairs of two get into a barrel and stomp their grapes to the rhythm of the music.
• Monday – Saturday • Wine Tasting: FREE (R15 for tasting of Limited Releases) • Wine Sales • Visa/Credit card facilities • FREE Cellar Tour: Booking Essential • Farm Rides • Child Friendly
Cloof Wine Estate
Visit the Cloof tasting room for a memorable experience. It is the ideal place for wine enthusiasts, culture inquisitors and those just curious as to why wine is one of South Africa’s most popular assets. Their wines include their award-winning Crucible Shiraz, Very Sexy Shiraz, and Cloof Pinotage.
Cloof have partnered with CapeNature and proclaimed their natural reserves as a Voluntary Conservation Site with their Stewardship program and pledged to manage the veld in accordance to their conservation laws and ethics. They have reintroduced locally indigenous wildlife into the reserve including Eland, Bontebok, Zebra, Red Hartebees, Gemsbok and Springbok.
BWI certified – Champions in biodiversity and one of the first to achieve this status. Cloof is so committed that they employed a full time Conservation Manager. They are also IPW approved (Integrated Production of wine) and WIETA compliant – Respecting all labour laws to ensure we perform and trade in an ethical way.
Their kitchen’s menu offers homemade, country style and fresh food and is open for lunch.
• Monday – Saturday • Wine Tasting: R20 • Wine Sales • Visa/Credit card facilities • FREE Cellar Tour: Booking Essential • Restaurant open for light lunches from Tues – Sat • Farm Rides • Child Friendly • Accommodation
Ormonde Vineyards is located in the town of Darling and offer their flagship range Ormonde as well as the Ondine range of Speciality wines. These wines have earned many awards and accolades.
Four Ormonde wines were honoured in the Top 100 SA Wines Challenge: Ormonde “Barrel Selected” Shiraz 2013, their Single Vineyard “Chip of the Old Block” Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 and their aged white wines being; Ondine Chenin Blanc 2013 and Ondine Semillon 2013.
Ormonde Vineyards are grateful and respect their environment, by managing their vineyards with responsibility in mind. They do not spray insecticides, are a member of the Biodiversity in Wine Initiative and adhere to The Integrated Production of Wine Initiatives.
Their workforce is their most valuable asset and they respect and learn from each other constantly, placing strong emphasis on training and education, from the children in their preschool facility, as well as all the way through to management.
• Open Monday – Saturday • FREE Ondine Wine Tasting (R25.00 to taste our flagship – Ormonde Range) • Wine Sales • Visa/Credit card facilities • Cellar Tour: Booking essential • Chocolate & Wine pairing: R50 – Booking essential • Kids Friendly
Part of the Culture Route on the R27
When: Mon – Fri: 9:00 – 16:00 | Sat: 9:00 – 15:00
Where: Cnr. Mount Pleasant & Langfontein Street, Darling
Contact: +27 (0)22 492 3540 | [email protected] | www.ormonde.co.za
Darling is easily accessible from Cape Town, and is attraction on the Culture Route. This heritage inspired route is made up of attractions that can be easily reached via the R27 West Coast Road or N7 and begins a mere 25 minutes from the Mother City.