There’s no such thing as a ‘rote’ or standard wine tour with Five Star Guides’ wine specialist Fiona McDonald.
Firstly, the tour changes – sometimes on the fly – according to the guests’ specific interests. Of necessity and also because of the wealth of wineries in the area, tours focus on Stellenbosch, South Africa’s largest and most prominent wine region.
South Africa is globally unique in knowing precisely when its wine industry began – because Governor Jan van Riebeeck noted in his diary in February 1659: “Today, praise be to God, the first grapes were crushed at the Cape of Good Hope.”
That 350+-year history, allied with a vibrant and dynamic modern generation of winemakers makes South Africa one of the most exciting wine regions in the world to visit. Local producers are respecting a classical ethos while also playing to their strengths, these being dynamism, diversity of soils and people and harnessing venerable old vines to make thrilling new wines.
Generally, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek producers are visited to display what the country does best. Chenin Blanc is one of the foremost examples so tours could encompass a visit to Ken Forrester Wines, one of the standard bearers for this humble grape – or De Morgenzon or Jordan, both of which also produce an excellent range of world-beating wines, notably Chardonnay.
Sometimes it happens that winemakers open up the cellar doors, allowing a glimpse behind the barrels, explaining their specific vinification techniques and maturation policies.
It’s all in a day’s touring with wine raconteur, Fiona McDonald.
Before your trip begins, we will meet up over a lite breakfast as a formal meet and greet. Once you've met Fiona McDonald, your 5 star tour guide, we will then proceed with our trip to the winelands.