Vergenoegd Harvest Lunch

A few weeks ago I shared my Weekend Wanderings which led me to Vergenoegd Wine Estate.

Today I’m sharing a bit more about the estate – my second visit – which found me enjoying the most incredible Harvest Lunch experience…

IMG_5677_1

My first observation on this visit was just how many changes have taken place over the past month or so… the first being the lovely new signage and sweet little “ducks” that welcomed us on arriving at the entrance (just off Baden Powell Drive and the N2)

IMG_5548_1 vergenoegd harvest lunch

We were warmly welcomed once again and shown to our spots at the long communal table where we introduced ourselves to our fellow diners and settled down for an afternoon of decadence under the oaks…

The atmosphere was friendly and fun and there were lots of laughs around the table. This is a wonderful way of enjoying a meal, especially if you like meeting new people and sharing a story or two over a glass of wine. The guests included various families celebrating milestone birthdays, friends and couples enjoying time together in a beautiful setting and tourists looking to experience life on an authentic wine farm.

IMG_5554_1 IMG_5528_1 IMG_5474_1

Our kids were accommodated on picnic blankets under the trees just a few metres from us and being of a self-sufficient age (!) they kept themselves busy with the many activities and equipment provided – only occasionally popping by our spot at the table for reassurance!

IMG_5502_1

Spread out across the expansive lawns were balls of all shapes and sizes and a croquet game. A large blackboard kept my budding artist busy who took it upon himself to be inspired by his surroundings and drew the Vergenoegd Manor House without prompting… I was pretty proud!

IMG_5500_1 IMG_5518_1

Once their Duckling Delight picnic boxes arrived, they dived in to their healthy lunch and then proceeded to keep themselves occupied with the biscuit icing and decorating activity… All in all they weren’t bored once and were kept so busy within our sight that we were able to sit back and relax to enjoy the scenery, company and delicious food!

IMG_5519_1 IMG_5522_1 IMG_5524_1

The Harvest Lunch spread arrived dish by dish on platters perfect for sharing and we indulged in the most incredible food, prepared by chef Ryan Shell.

IMG_5498_1

The starter was a salmon mousse roulade, mains were coffee-crusted wildebeest, kabeljou cooked in foil and pork belly and served with side dishes of the creamiest mashed potatoes, cauliflower in white sauce, roasted root vegetables and baked aubergine. Plates were piled high and second helpings encouraged… THIS is how life should be lived. Always!

IMG_5487_1 IMG_5564_1 IMG_5568_1

The main meal was followed by dessert – individual lemon sorbet and a decadent chocolate cake served with strawberries and cream that still makes my mouth water just typing this!

IMG_5573_1

And of course, a cheese board extraordinaire served complete with a bunch of grapes from the vineyards.

IMG_5571_1

After the lazy lunch there was a bit of time to explore the farm and outbuildings before heading indoors to enjoy a unique blending experience of our choice and my husband headed straight for the wine cellar to chat to the wine maker, Marelize Jacobs who was in the midst of harvesting the vines.

IMG_5541_1 IMG_5542_1

Then it was time to head inside the historic manor house for a unique wine blending experience. Using our own taste buds as a guide we set about learning what goes in to creating the perfect wine blend with Vergenoegd’s Merlot, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon as a starting point.

IMG_5580_1 IMG_5583_1 IMG_5591_1 vergenoegd wine tasting IMG_5598_1

As you can imagine, it was a festive afternoon, made all the more special when through the window we spotted the Runner Ducks heading home from a day’s work in the vineyards…

IMG_5593_1 IMG_5592_1

Our wine blending swiftly came to an end as we all raced outside, eager to not miss the highlight of a day at Vergenoegd… The March of the Runner Ducks!

Hundreds (upon hundreds) of waddling quackers made their way through the farm and in front of the Manor House – all looking very earnest and serious at their important role.

Thanks to these little ducks the farm has acquired WWF biodiversity certificate as the vineyards now use no poison or pesticides as the ducks eliminate snails, slugs and other bugs from the vineyards.

 

IMG_5620_1 IMG_5624_1 IMG_5625_1 IMG_5636_1

These feathered friends head off to work each morning at 9:30am and return at 3:30pm and the public is welcome to enjoy the experience at these times each day. The sheer numbers are staggering (approx 700) and together they make for a quite a unique experience, especially for kids!

My kids loved following them all the way to their enclosure… and then joined Mr D the Duck Man in the duckling nursery where they got a sneak peek behind the scenes to see what goes into keeping this workforce strong in numbers! (P.S. Don’t stress – these ducks don’t find their way into the kitchen… too muscular apparently!)

IMG_5657_1 vergenoegd ducks
The Vergenoegd Harvest Experience happens every Thursday, Friday and Saturday lunchtime until the end of March at a cost of R350 per person and includes three courses of farm-fresh food including salads, veggies and herbs from our garden, served with Vergenoegd wines, Manor House iced tea blend, water and coffee. The lunch is served between 12:00 and 15:00 and is limited to 20 places per day so booking is essential.

Blending experiences allow visitors to take home their own personally blended and branded Wine, Olive Oil, Tea or Coffee.

 

 

Contact Vergenoegd Wine Estate

Baden Powell Drive, Stellenbosch Wine Route, Cape Town

Tel:+27 (0) 21 843 3248

Email: reservations@vergenoegd.co.za 

Web: www.vergenoegd.co.za

 

 

 

Images: Kathryn Rossiter

Disclaimer: 1

Avatar
Kathryn Rossiter

Kathryn is a South African lifestyle blogger and mom of 2 who has been blogging daily for over 9 years! She writes about travel, health, beauty, fashion, decor and family... but not food (unless it's food she's eaten made by someone else) as she is a hopeless cook. She only wakes up early for 2 things... a red-eye flight to somewhere exotic and early morning game drives. She has just finished an extensive home renovation and would prefer to never see another box again. She's never met a chocolate or glass of bubbles that she didn't like!

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.