The Franschhoek Wine Tasting Guide is part of the South America & Africa Points Heist Trip Report.
Like golf, I used to believe that wine was reserved for the old and wealthy. My knowledge of wine came from the movie Sideways as did my resentment for merlot. Through plenty of research and development, I have increased my knowledge of vino that I now fancy myself a wine connoisseur. Like golf, I may not be able to break par, but I do know more than the average lush who groups wines into two categories: white or red. The journey to wine proficiency began by wine tasting in Napa, then Argentina, followed by Australia, New Zealand, Italy, and, most recently, Chile and South Africa.
Every region has its own varietal, its own ‘we are famous for’, and its own wine tasting experience. I will never forget how I was gripped with fear when I had to bicycle from one vineyard to the next in Mendoza. TPOL truests will recall my journey from the insane asylum in Sicily up Mt. Etna, only to be pulled over by Italian’s finest on the way back to being committed. In Franschhoek, there are a few ways to do the wine tour. The first option is Uber, a necessary option if you want to visit Anthonij Rupert’s vineyard and car museum. The next option is to walk to those surrounding Franschhoek, for example, Le Lude is nearby. The final option is the tourist route on the Franschhoek wine tram.
With only one night in Franschhoek (a mistake), I went with the convenient Uber option and visited the following:
- Anthonij Rupert (day one)
- Le Lude (day two, am)
- Leopards Leap (day two, afternoon)
- Simonsing (Stellenbosch, day two afternoon en route back to Cape Town)
I would recommend spending two nights in Franschhoek. The first day should be spent visiting Rupert’s vineyard and car museum followed by dinner at Le Bon Vivant. The second day should be casually spent walking around Franschhoek, eating, and perhaps taking the tram to get in as many vineyards as possible. The third day should be spent the way I did in day two, morning champagne, afternoon wine, and one more bottle with a burger at Simonsing. If you can somehow handle more food and more drinks, extend your wine tasting to the college town of Stellenbosch, a wine tasting experience i did the first time I visited Cape Town (see Guns & Butter: Cape Town Travel Guide).
As you can see from these photos, eventually there’s a tipping point for indulging in vices.