We may currently be snuggled up in the midst of winter here in sunny South Africa, but springtime is right around the corner. Birds are chirping, orchards are poised to burst into bloom at the slightest provocation and before you know it, it will be time to dig out the sun hats and short sleeves to enjoy all sorts of blooming lovely springtime foodie adventures. Well whip out your diaries, fellow eatsplorers, because the FaBULLous Bot River Spring Weekend 2018 will be taking place at wine estates and venues throughout the Bot River valley in the Overberg on 1 and 2 September, and it is shaping up to be quite the shindig.
Side note: The whole ‘bull’ vibe is connected to the origin of the region’s name. The Bot River wine route’s logo features a striking bull, which celebrates the area’s original Khoisan name – Gouga (place of cattle). When the Dutch arrived, they made the connection with butter, which led to the name we use today. As such, the bull connects the history of the region’s inhabitants for almost a full millennium and stands as a symbol of a meeting place of diverse cultures. Keep that little titbit in reserve to toss into conversation over the weekend and earn a few trivia brownie points.
So, what’s cooking at the Bot River Spring Weekend?
All sorts of wonderful stuff! Don’t miss out on:
The Bull Race
A scavenger hunt for grownups (!) hosted by the Gallivanting Goose. Participants will be required to complete challenges prompted by a mobile phone app. This is your chance to learn more about Bot River and win cool prizes too. The game is limited to 40 people only, so book your spot soon.
Farmer’s Market at PaardenKloof Estate
PaardenKloof Ecology Lifestyle Estate is one of the first farms in the Western Cape to re-introduce Nguni cattle to the region. Here, you’ll be able to interact with farmyard animals, let the children ride ponies and even buy Nguni skins and horns. There will also be a farmer’s market, where you’ll be able to shop for local produce, protea flowers and nursery plants.
Chef Matt Manning at Luddite
Chef Matt Manning, who perfected his trade in London’s finest Michelin-starred restaurants, will cook up a storm at Luddite where the Rivertones reggae band will play on Saturday night.
And this, my friend, is just the tip of the delicious iceberg. For a full line-up of all the events that will be taking place on the weekend, get in touch with Melissa Nelsen – she’s the lady who’ll be able to give you the full inside scoop.
The Little Spring Market at Gabriëlskloof
On Saturday and Sunday visitors will be able to browse and shop an eclectic selection of products at this laid-back market. You will find plants, crafts, toys and jewellery with every offering themed to the season’s joyful vibrancy. Live music and a delicious, spring-inspired food offering will compliment Gabriëlskloof’s diverse and excellent wine collection.
How to book your experiences
Book your weekend pass (R150, wine glass and tastings at all participating wine farms included) and other select activities on Quicket. Some events have to be booked with the host venues directly. You’ll be able to pick up your pass at Fiore Nursery on the Bot River town square when you roll into town on the 1st of September.
Where to stay
TOP TIP: Book your accommodation ASAP. Festivalgoers tend to stick around for the whole weekend, which means rooms and cottages in the vicinity are going to fill up quick sticks. While there are all sorts of self-catering accommodation and farm stays on offer in this part of the Overberg, we highly recommend that you go old school for this one. The Bot River Hotel and Houw Hoek Inn are longstanding institutions in the Bot River area, and chockful of character. You know – the kinds of places where you can plop down at the bar and walk out with a bunch of new buddies at the end of the evening.
Keep an eye on Eatsplorer Magazine in comings weeks and months – there’s loads more where this came from. The Eatsplorer team is out there drumming up the most delicious experiences for spring and summer and we’ll be sure to keep you in the loop.
Looking for the best new food experiences around Cape Town? Subscribe to our newsletter and we’ll keep you informed. We pinkie-promise to only send you the good stuff. You know – tasty new experiences, fun outings, a few exclusive offers…
Writing Anna-Bet Stemmet