Tag Archives: deli

Snacking at Asara Wine Estate & Hotel in Stellenbosch (2016-10-15) Photo Gallery | Restaurants 02 JAN 2017

One Saturday in October last year, Chantelle and I decided to take the girls out for a spot of strawberry picking at Polkadraai in Stellenbosch. However on arrival at the strawberry farm it was immediately clear that pretty much the entire Cape Town must have had the same idea as us, and so we did a u-turn and headed back towards Stellenbosch, looking for something else to do instead.

Then a brainwave hit me – I’d previously visited the five star Asara Wine Estate & Hotel in Stellenbosch for a business meeting with Distell, and have wanted to show the place off to Chantelle ever since. So I took a chance and turned in by Asara’s manned gates and stated that I was off to visit the deli (which I think I remember having spotted that last time I was there).

As it turns out, they do have a deli on-site – and surprisingly it is a pretty cool little find.

If you aren’t familiar with Asara, then know that it is an award-winning wine estate and 5-star hotel billed as being situated in the heart of the Cape Winelands. Breathtaking views, tranquil atmosphere, upmarket service – well you get the picture.

Previously known as Raphael’s (where I previously had enjoyed a lunch), mise en place is the new destination fine dining restaurant at Asara, while the Sansibar is their casual, bistro-style dining option.

However, the spot that we were interested in seeing as we had our two little ones tagging along with us was Asara’s main courtyard and more specifically, the deli that then opens up onto it.

I was super surprised to find the deli stocked with all manner of exciting baked treats, and was even more taken aback at how well priced the finger snacks were – pretty soon we had placed an order for all manner of niceties, before selecting a table outside and then sitting back as our array of treats was brought out to us in a manner which I’m more than happy to dub as being a ‘simple high tea’ experience! ;)

The view from the courtyard is spectacular, the service is top notch, and amazingly, this was such a cool, well priced treat that all three of my girls thoroughly enjoyed!

(In other words, I guess we’ll have to head back that way sometime soon then – though maybe without the girls this time around so that Chantelle and I can give some of their other offerings a proper go…)

As always, a useful map:

Related Link: Asara Wine Estate & Hotel | Facebook

Food and Sculptures at Tokara Delicatessen in Stellenbosch (2016-09-17) Photo Gallery | Restaurants 29 DEC 2016

I used my weekends to visit a LOT of different places this year. One of the more visually interesting outings came about in September, when I took my three girls out for a light lunch at the Tokara Delicatessen, situated on the stunning Tokara Wine and Olive estate at the top of Helshoogte Pass outside Stellenbosch.

Tokara is itself a very upmarket estate, so it is pleasing that the team saw it fit to create a secondary, child friendly venue in the form of the excellent Tokara Delicatessen.

Given the farm’s elevated location, you are afforded stunning views of the surrounding mountains, down into the valley below, and all the way across False Bay for that matter. Both the vineyards and olive groves stretch as far as the eye can see, and picturesque is really the only word that fits the scene as you arrive in Tokara’s parking area.

Tokara is know for four things – its wines (made of grapes from three separate districts – Stellenbosch, Elgin and Hemel-en-Aarde), its range of exquisite olive oils, it’s leading fine dining restaurant, and its extensive collection of art and sculptures.

It is this love of art and sculpture that first greets you as you exit the car, with a wide variety of modern sculpture dotted all around the grounds of the Delicatessen and neighbouring Olive Barn.

Peacocks roam freely and visitors enter the ground with an immediate sense of wonder and awe thanks to the beautiful and visually interesting surroundings.

There is a beautiful deck outside the simple but elegantly designed deli, great for warm sunny days, while the cosy interior with its walls of glass simultaneously makes for the perfect winter venue.

There is a large lawn for kids to run around and play on, with the garden itself also dotted with a host of very interesting sculptures to take in (and in some cases, play on!).

The deli’s food is of course much easier on the wallet than Tokara’s restaurant proper, but pleasingly the deli’s food is just as good, with us thoroughly enjoying what was set down before us on the day.

Naturally, Chantelle was in love with every single aspect of the place, whilst the girls were far more interested in running about outside than sitting inside with boring old mom and dad!

(Obviously I did a lot of strolling about as well, snapping loads of photos and ambling about the openly accessible vineyards and olive groves out back whenever the opportunity arose.)

With lunch done and Chantelle’s interior/product browsing curiosity now sated, the girls and I then trundled down Tokara’s sculpture path, an easy walk through the olive trees and then down the road to Tokara proper, with the route again being dotted all along with some interesting sculptures and pretty flowers to boot.

So in summary: Even if it is just a visit to the kid friendly, more accessible Tokara Delicatessen at Tokara, you can’t help coming away from that place feeling just that little more… sophisticated.

Highly recommended.

Here is a useful map if you wish to explore the exquisite world of Tokara yourself:

Related Link: Tokara Delicatessen | Tokara

Scones and Juice at Terra Madre in the Elgin Valley (2016-09-10) Photo Gallery | Restaurants 06 NOV 2016

The exuberant and bubbly chef, restaurateur, foodie and… property entrepreneur Nicole Precoudis certainly has more than just a little experience when it comes to the food business, having both owned and worked in plenty of restaurants over the course of her career.

Grabouw’s Elgin Valley region then most certainly lucked out when she decided to make it her home, and in 2013, following a stint as partner in and head chef of Oak Valley’s The Pool Room (which both Chantelle and I love), she thew open the doors of her and her family’s 18.5 hectare working apple and olive farm and launched the Terra Madre Market, which (open on only a few select occastions) specialized in “slow-cooked regional fare, farm fresh produce, sourdough bread, baked goods and more – all prepared on the farm”.

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Fast forward to September 2016, and Terra Madre, now producing an excellent champagne style apple cider (the Terra Madre Pomme Classique Dry Elgin Cider) as well as the most delicious fresh pressed, single varietal apple and pear juice that I have ever tasted, launched their Food Barn in order to complement their growing food delivery business.

Somehow, I managed to catch wind of this opening, and because I was looking for something to do over the weekend with my girls, I headed out to the Elgin Valley and turned off onto the Viljoenshoop Road, the first time that I’ve ever actually done that funnily enough.

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Although the signage is a bit poor, the GPS got me to the right gate, which confusingly was closed. However, nothing that a quick chat over the intercom couldn’t solve, so a quick farm road hop and the girls and I ended our drive up to the Terra Madre Barn – which was open for business… more or less.

Because I was coming in blind, I was kind of half expecting a little deli or something along those lines – however, the actual setting is a by far cooler one. In essence, you phone up ahead, book a lunch slot, and then get treated to a proper family luncheon out in the middle of the orchard  – and by the smell of and description of the food being prepared in the kitchen, those lucky people who had gotten this part right were definitely in for a major treat!

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Naturally, opening day, as it so often does, was not really going entirely to plan, with a lot of running around and things happening all over the place. However, the wonderfully affable Nicole and her family immediately made us feel welcome, and so we ordered some nice little scones off of the bake table and settled in to enjoy the surroundings.

Unfortunately for us though, in all the chaos of everyone getting ready for the actual lunch service, our order was kind of forgotten about – though that said, the girls didn’t seem to mind much. They were pretty much all over the place, making themselves at home, running around everywhere, sprinkled with bouts of Jessica randomly handing out hugs to anyone she could find!

Nicole brought some of the Terra Madre apple juice for us to try, and it is by far the best apple juice that I have ever tasted – a sentiment with which both the girls wholeheartedly appear to agree with. (Also, when our coffee and scones did eventually get served, well let’s just say that the scones were some of the best that I’ve ever had as well!)

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We thanked everyone for their hospitality, and made ourselves scarce before the real lunch time guests arrived, but not before we of course took a stroll around the grounds to admire the orchards and surroundings.

(That said, both Jessica and Emily were far to enthralled with the little puppy running about outside to care much about anything else that I was trying to show them!)

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So now that I know the setup (and apparently it has since been tweaked a little bit), I look forward to our next visit to Terra Madre where I can show off what looks to be an absolute gastronomic treat to Chantelle – making sure of course to take full credit for discovering this gem before she did.

A map in case you want to explore this interesting addition to the Elgin Valley tourism scene:

Related Link: Terra Madre | Facebook

Lunch at Beulah Farm Deli outside Yzerfontein (2016-09-04) Photo Gallery | Restaurants 29 SEP 2016

Having spent a lovely Sunday chasing wild flowers in the Postberg section of the West Coast National Park with Chantelle, the kids, and my folks, we decided to end off a successful day with a bite to eat. Unfortunately, the Geelbek Restaurant inside the park was a little too busy for our liking, and so we exited the park, put in some petrol at Yzerfontein, and then popped into Beulah Farm Deli for a (very) late lunch.

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Interestingly enough, this visit to Beulah came almost exactly a year after we had first discovered it, and there have been some subsequent changes to this quaint eatery that Chantelle so immediately had fallen in love with the first time around.

Most noticeable is of course the fact that the pork charcuterie specialists Eighteen94 CureSmiths have moved out, rebranding themselves as The Flying Pig cureSmiths and setting up shop in Darling instead – though their cured meat is still available in the deli section of Beulah. In their place is now a bakery operated by Brett and Anli Nortier of Rosemead Artisan, meaning that all of a sudden Beulah Farm Deli now sports a lot more baked goods on the menu!

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Honestly, I’m a little less excited about the place than the first time we experienced them. To me they’ve lost a bit of that sense of being hip, a sort of place that would sit perfectly in somewhere trendy like say Obs (Observatory) in Cape Town, and have instead embraced a more practical, West Coast farm stall eatery approach. Nevertheless, the interior remains ‘interesting’, and the food and coffee were perfectly good.

(Of course, I could be talking rubbish because Chantelle still seems to like it very much. Plus, the place seems to be very popular with both the locals and travelers alike!)

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Anyway, after a pleasant sit down bite to eat, refreshed and ready for the road (it had after all been a very long day of driving), we said our goodbyes and headed back down the R27 – because if you live in Gordon’s Bay like we do, then you still have quite a long road ahead of you in order to get back home! :)

The deli itself is essentially right next to the more well known West Coast Farm Stall. I’ve submitted the location to Google Maps, but it might not be showing up for everyone just yet. Nevertheless, here is the map as it currently stands:

Related Link: Beulah Farm Deli | Rosemead Artisan

Horse-drawn Carriage Ride at Klein Joostenberg in Stellenbosch (2016-08-27) Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 10 SEP 2016

I have already mentioned our morning spent frolicking on the lawns and eating from the deli at Klein Joostenberg the other day, but what I haven’t yet mentioned is the actual reason that the girls and I were there in the first place.

A cart horse.

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I remembered that a couple of years back, you used to be able to purchase short little rides on a horse-drawn cart. Whether or not this was still the case, I didn’t know, but nevertheless, I was pretty sure that this would be something of a little adventure that both girls might enjoy.

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As it turns out, the rickety old carriage is still very much there, and for a fee of R15 per passenger, you get a short ride past the pond, into a small glen of trees and then back the way you came.

(Oh, and the guys operating it now also have a standalone horse there, so if your kids prefer riding on an actual horse as opposed to just enjoying a cart ride – well, you’re sorted).

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Emily wasn’t quite convinced that this was totally a fun idea in the beginning, so she remained seated on my lap for the journey (but did eventually get rather into it!). Jessica on the other hand was super excited and loved every minute of it – going even so far to “thank the nice horsie” at the end!)

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So yes, definitely a pleasant morning distraction!

Related Link: Klein Joostenberg

Playing on the Lawns of Klein Joostenberg in Stellenbosch (2016-08-27) Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 04 SEP 2016

Joostenberg is a diverse, 5th generation family business situated in the Muldersvlei district of Stellenbosch, known for their organic vineyard farming and boutique wine production, their small herd of grass fed free range cattle reared for beef, their pork specialist butchery, their seasonal cut flowers, herbs and vegetables, their popular deli, their events venue, and last but not least, their world class, family-friendly bistro.

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Most of the actual work happens at the working farm of Joostenberg, but it is Klein Joostenberg, their retail outlet housing the deli, cellar door wine sales, butchery, bistro and a modern events venue that is the real attraction here.

Extremely family friendly with massive lawns and a welcoming atmosphere, we’ve enjoyed quite a number of picnics here in the past when Jessica was a lot younger – as well as one wedding come to think of it!

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As you might imagine, the girls had an absolute ball. We enjoyed a ride on the horse carriage, ate some yummy treats from the deli, ran around on the lawn, explored the grounds, chased chickens, and played on the jungle gym – the only thing we didn’t end up doing was grabbing a table and enjoying a bite to eat at the bistro!

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It is worth noting that there has been one big change to the grounds since we last visited – a lot of the kids’ play equipment have been removed to make space for the Stellenbosch Brewing Company, whose tasting room/restaurant now sits squarely on the picnic lawn space, which is a welcome addition to the experience as a whole.

Sadly, I didn’t get around to trying their beer out either (an oversight on my part), but now that I know that they are there, I’ll definitely be visiting again sooner rather than later!

If you are looking for a polished family friendly space with a good outdoors feel to it, then you definitely can’t go wrong with a visit to the charming experience that is Klein Joostenberg.

Related Link: Joostenberg

Breakfast at Beulah on the R27 (2015-09-12) Photo Gallery 02 OCT 2015

A couple of weekends ago, we split the kids (one went to Granny, one went to Ouma), and after not the best of date night ever (couldn’t locate the restaurant we wanted to try, settled for mediocre, in the middle of a renovation, Spur, and then watched a mediocre Charlize Theron drama/thriller at Ster Kinekor),  we headed out bright and early on the Saturday morning, embarking on our whirlwind flowers on the West Coast adventure!

IMG_20150912_113833 Breakfast at Beulah restaurant on the R27

To start things off though, we needed breakfast, and following some good advice from Chantelle’s baking friends, we hunted down Beulah’s Farm Deli,  which stands alongside the R27 at the Yzerfontein/Darling crossing.

The exterior is… ‘charming’ in a rundown farm stall kind of way, but inside is where the real magic lies.

The tiny deli section of this vintage (but trendy modern) decorated farm stall is stocked with some exquisite farm products, a lot of these being meat (pork) related because Beulah also plays host Eighteen94 CureSmiths, experts in the age old charcuterie style of food preservation.

IMG_20150912_114810 Chantelle Lotter at Beulah restaurant on the R27

(This of course then translates to a lot of delicious pork/bacon making it onto Beulah’s delectable menu.)

The coffee is good, but believe me, the breakfast is even better. Well presented, full of flavour, and with a feel of being prepared by someone who loves food and is well trained/watches a lot of fancy cooking shows.

IMG_20150912_120053 Bacon Breakfast at Beulah restaurant on the R27

Needless to say, Chantelle and I left there  in absolute heaven, hunger sated and ready for the next step of our little breakaway journey!

Related Link: Beulah Farm Deli | Eighteen94 CureSmiths

Wakaberry Weekend My Life 09 FEB 2013

It was pretty hot and humid last weekend, pretty much keeping pace with how the rest of the week was, meaning that Friday evening was even more of a loss than normal, with Chantelle and I watching Big Bang Theory, eating Ostrich Mince Wraps and dealing with a fairly unsettled Jess during the evening. Saturday morning saw the three of us stock up Chantelle’s car with all the neatly boxed cakes and cupcakes, and then make the long drive through to Franschhoek for the usual Sacred Ground Deli delivery.

jessica lotter and the gian teddy bear in franschhoek

Whilst Chantelle was organising things at the deli, Jess and I took the opportunity to stroll down Franschhoek main road for a bit, visiting the giant teddy sitting in front of one of the stores (which Jessie was absolutely thrilled to see), ambling through the bustling Saturday goods market, and finally snack on some delicious pancakes we grabbed from the aforementioned market! On our drive back we spotted on of those newly disguised speed cameras which look like green power utility boxes coming into Stellenbosch (very sneak), and at the last minute we decided to pull off at the Root 44 market at Audacia to get a feeling of what the atmosphere is like on a Saturday. Turns out that it is pretty much the same as on a Sunday! (Shame, while we were walking around, Jess must have slipped and fell, because she ended up with a nasty, bloody injury at the back of her head!)

jessica lotter in the sand pit at Root 44 market

Back home it was back to baking for Chantelle, who needed to finish a Strawberry Shortcake decorated Chocolate Cake for Annelie’s little girl’s birthday party the next day. Meanwhile, Jessie and I nipped out to the shops and stocked up for a braai, which in the end turned out pretty damn nice if I say so myself! Annelie loaned her Lollos DVDs to Jessica who turns out to be a huge fan, which pretty much kept her occupied until bedtime, meaning that I was left free to plonk myself down and watch the all important Bafana Bafana AFCON game against Mali, which sadly we lost in the end but not for the lack of trying I must add! (Shame, the unpleasant heat must have again been too much for Jess, as she again had a rather unsettled night).

jessica lotter wearing her first pair of sunglasses

Sunday say Chantelle, Jess and myself nip out early to the mall in order to purchase a few odds and ends that I needed, before returning home to welcome the Montgomery clan who stopped by for a quick visit before their luncheon date out in Botrivier. The afternoon arrived and once again we headed out towards Stellenbosch, this time to meet up with all the friends on an outing to Wakaberry, a delightful frozen yoghurt (froyo) bar that allows you to put together the yummiest of desserts! A seriously kid’s friendly location and outing, which also just happened to sport a foosball table which proceeded to keep the guys occupied for what felt like hours (even with all the foraging for 2 Rand coins!).

wakaberry frozen yoghurt bar stellenbosch

From there the group took a stroll to the quaint Stellenbosch Botanical Gardens, and as the day was beginning to wind down for the little ones, we grabbed a quick drink from the little restaurant before making our exit (which was initially thwarted by the locked gates which was a little scary truth be told) and heading back towards Gordon’s Bay. Not feeling like the effort of making supper or stopping at the shop to purchase something to eat, we made a snap call to pull in at the McDonalds at Somerset Mall, a decision we later regretted, what with having forgotten just how bad McDonalds “food” actually is!

chantelle lotter and jessica lotter in stellenbosch botanical gardens

Back home it was the usual bedtime routine for young Jess, followed by some viewing of the original X-Men movie, and finally a tasty little dose of ice-cream, before hitting the sack to bring to an end yet another busy weekend.

jessica lotter sleeping on the couch

Photo Gallery: Delivery to Sacred Ground in Franschhoek (2013-01-12) Photo Gallery 12 JAN 2013

Jessica and I joined Chantelle for her morning cupcakes and cakes delivery to the Sacred Ground Deli in Franschhoek, on what turned out to be a gloriously sunny day. As always the tourist town was bustling, with tourists, locals and even a festive group of minstrels, the latter being something that Jessica in particular liked!

(So much so that when they stopped to take a break between songs, she broke out in applause and squeals of delight!)

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