As a long-time resident of the Constantia Valley you would think I would have managed to explore every corner of it – especially the wine farms – in the past 25 years (or so!). I’ve certainly given it my best shot, establishing a regular routine of visiting my favourite Constantia Wine Farms often, BUT, until recently, there remained one wine farm in Constantia that I had yet to visit – Klein Constantia.
Tucked up in one of quieter corners of Constantia, Klein Constantia is probably one of the more remote wine farms to visit in the valley, and a security boom at the entrance always seemed to signal to me that it was a “no go” zone… It felt too intimidating to sign in and arrive for an impromptu visit when all you’re doing is looking around or wanting a quick wine tasting. I always felt like I needed to have a reason or a purpose for signing in on a form.
A few weeks back I was finally given a reason!
An invite to lunch at their brand new lunch time restaurant offering – The Bistro Klein Constantia – along with a few of my favourite blogging fam.
Signing in at the security check point, I quickly found out that this wasn’t as intimidating as I first thought when the security guard greeted me with a warm smile and offered a friendly greeting and helpful map giving me directions to the right parking area!
Entering the estate on a bright Spring day, I was enchanted by the bright blue skies, budding oak trees, luminous green vineyards, looming mountains and agapanthus lined drive up to the restaurant.
On arrival I found a sun dappled terrace beneath the trees where our group settled to enjoy a leisurely lunch. The inside area of the restaurant was equally welcoming and warm, with a comfortable atmosphere and a more private area located off the main dining area perfect for small groups.
At The Bistro @ Klein Constantia, the intention is to offer a unique Cape wine and food experience, showcasing the rich culinary history of South Africa, while highlighting the strong artisanal culture of Europe – after all Klein Constantia, as the home of the original Vin de Constance, has many historical links with Europe over its’ 333 year history!
Focusing on fresh, seasonal, locally sourced ingredients, chef Graham Davies has a number of exciting summer dishes up his sleeve, all perfectly paired with a selection of their award-winning wines.
The Bistro offers two and three course lunch menus priced at R300 for the starter & main option (Veg R220) and R400 for the starter, main & dessert option (Veg R310)
From the menu I selected a starter salad of calamari with lemon and smoked chilli which was fresh and light and beautifully paired with a crisp glass of Metis Sauvignon Blanc.
For mains I stuck with my seafood theme and opted for the Fish of the Day.
As Klein Constantia is the home of the iconic sweet wine, Vin de Constance, it was only fitting that we would find out a little bit more about this incredible wine from the winemaker himself, Matthew Day, who took us down to the Vin de Constance cellar for a very memorable wine tasting experience where we were invited to taste various vintages of the wine, straight from the barrel!!
“The sweet, luscious and excellent dessert wine called Constantia”
Vin de Constance is one of the wines everyone has to try at least once in their life, and more especially if they live in the Constantia valley, so I was thrilled by this amazing opportunity…
Fortunately visitors to The Bistro have the chance to end their lunch with a specially curated platter of local cheeses that are perfectly paired with the Vin de Constance dessert wine for a R40 surcharge.
One I think is well worth paying in order to taste the wine that Napoleon himself drank while in exile on St Helena Island!
Lunch is served from Tuesday to Sunday between 12 noon and 2.30pm, with the kitchen closing at 3.00pm. Cheese boards are available until 4.00pm.
Special Enquiries/ Private Functions (up to 12 guests only)
Tel: +27 (0) 21 794 5188 between 9.00am and 11.00am Monday to Friday.
E-mail: [email protected]
Please note: The venue is regrettably not suitable for children under the age of 12.