With exceptional wines, stunning scenery, and excellent restaurants, South Africa’s Western Cape is not only stunningly beautiful, it is becoming the planet’s hottest wine destination. Add the relative strength of the US Dollar versus the South African Rand, the Western Cape’s proximity to stunning national parks, and Cape Town, arguably Africa’s most beautiful city, and it’s easy to see why South Africa’s Western Cape is a must taste and see wine destination.
Located on the Western Cape less than an hour’s drive north of Cape Town, the picture postcard town of Stellenbosch and the surrounding mountains form a dramatic backdrop for what is now being heralded as the planet’s most beautiful wine country. Although some may wish to debate that claim to tout the various picturesque merits of other world-renowned wine regions, what is not in question is the integral role that the Western Cape and Stellenbosch in particular have played for more than three centuries in the formation of South African wine. Stellenbosch, along with nearby Franschoek, Paarl and Swartland, dominate the wine production on South Africa’s Western Cape, and these viticultural regions are unquestionably South Africa’s oldest and most important wine producing areas. These wine lands are South Africa’s Napa, Sonoma, Santa Barbara, and Central Coast appellations. They contain a myriad of microclimates and are responsible for high quality red and white wines from a burgeoning number of premier grape varieties, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Viognier, and South Africa’s unique varietal Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault. From wineries in South Africa’s Western Cape flow an enormous variety of exciting wines, which are both world class and unique in character and style. It’s time to afford them their due.