If you go down to the Crags (on the outskirts of Plettenberg Bay) today, you’re in for a big surprise!
Four wine estates – all laid out along one meandering stretch of dirt road: Redford Road, Plettenberg Bay.
Set against the backdrop of the Tsitsikamma Mountains, amongst plantations, farmland and indigenous forest, these five wine estates have sprung up, with hard work and vision, to produce award-winning wines and MCC bubblies. Plett is now a recognised ‘Wine of Origin’ region and is known for wines produced by cooler-climate varieties such as chardonnay, sauvignon blanc and pinot noir. Serious wine-lovers, those looking for a sunlit afternoon of tasting and those glittering purveyors of the ‘Bubbly Life’ will find sheer delight along Redford Road.
You may choose to drive, take a guided tour, cycle or even a horse-drawn carriage along Redford Road to visit the four estates: Kay & Monty Vineyards, Lodestone Wine & Olives, Newstead Lund Family Vineyards and Bramon Wine Estate. Below we’ve given you a sneak peek at each of these unique estates and what you can expect:
KAY & MONTY VINEYARDS
Sit on a deck, nestled next to forest and mountains with views over a small dam and horses frolicking in the fields. Kay & Monty’s location is as lovely as its wines. An enormous orchid greenhouse has been converted into an elegant tasting room complete with a kitchen serving delicious platters of procured cheeses, mouth-watering charcuterie boards, paired with locally sourced artisanal breads, and their wines. At the time of writing this, they have one MCC bubbly (2014) and two Sauvignon Blancs (2014 & 2015) that haven’t yet sold old.
LODESTONE WINE & OLIVES
John & Ingrid Tonkin, of Lodestone, have made full use of the coastal Fynbos region in their development of their wine and olive farm; In addition to planting Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, the Tonkins have planted an olive orchard of six varieties suitable for olive oil production. Visitors can now enjoy an olive oil and wine tasting, from farm to table, in the recently opened tasting room which offers more breathtaking views across a lake the Fynbos and mountains. Look out for gems like the “JimDog” red blend, “Stonechat” brut rose MCC and “Stoepsit” brut rose.
NEWSTEAD LUND FAMILY VINEYARDS
With award-winning decor, restaurant and wines, Newstead is particularly delightful for those looking for an exclusive, one-of-a-kind tasting experience. One of Plett older estates, Doug & Sue Lund have worked hard to align their estate with the best in the country and, as the family are avid polo players, as an essential refreshment on the thriving South African polo scene. With incredible attention to detail, Sue oversees the restaurant and lovingly prepared picnic baskets. Their latest offering is the highly anticipated Bubbly Bar, serving bubbly, craft beers and gin-infused cocktails for the discerning palate. Their MCC is often pre-sold out, so it is a must-taste when you get the chance. Otherwise, their Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are all designed to surprise and delight!
BRAMON WINE ESTATE
Technically, Bramon Wine Estate is just across the N2, but a list of estates in the Crags wouldn’t be complete without a mention of the “Grandaddy” of the Plett Winelands. Bramon (named for Peter & Caroline Thorpe’s children: Bram & Manon) planted Plettenberg Bay’s first vines in 2000 and are the pioneers of our blossoming wine region. Their wines have won numerous awards and they were the first to produce a Sauvignon Blanc MCC – deliciously, mouthwateringly dry and refreshing on a warm day. The restaurant offers cosy indoor seating (for those winter afternoons) and tables amongst the vines for a summer’s day, serving up homemade bread, pates, cheeses, salads and more to appreciative patrons. All told, Bramon is inviting, unpretentious and a sheer pleasure to visit.