The 19th Hermanus wine and food festival was held on Friday 11th and Saturday 12th August 2017. This was the second year the event was hosted at the Hermanus Curro private school which is an ideal location for this festival.
On arrival at the venue, you are guided onto the schools sports ground which provides ample parking and very close to the entrance of the festival. At the entrance each visitor can pay R50 to enter and also choose to pay a further R120 if you would like to go into the wine tasting hall. This process was well organized only taking two or three minutes to pay and have a wine tasting wrist band attached to your person and pick up your info booklet and a nice wine tasting glass. I must complement the organizers on the glass, it’s a proper full wine glass and not a small awkward tasting glass…well done!
The festival has two main marques and plenty of seating for all under a massive canopy. One marque is reserved for the purchase of liquid, refreshment, offering an assortment of gin bars to blue champagne bars to lots of craft beer vendors. Certainly cater for all tastes and choices. One negative I noticed in this tent was you could not buy a cold drink or non alcoholic beverage for the guy who has been delegated the driver. Maybe provide a Coke or juice trailer next year for the sober participates and kids.
I tried the gin which changes colour and also shared a bottle of the blue champagne. Both excellent choices.
To get into the wine tasting hall you need to show your wrist band and this allows you access to the 50 or so wine farms which are represented.
Now I understand why his festival is one of the largest and most successful festivals in South Africa today. Each wine estate has a table displaying a selection of their cultivars. A representative of the wine farm will pour you a generous tasting of the wine of your choice and be willing to interact with you and chat about the farm and particular wine you are tasting.
I noticed this year their was some wine farms which were outside the Elgin wine region. Farms such as D’Aria from Durbanville, Hartenberg estate from Bottelary hills in Stellenbosch and Beyerskloof in the Stellenbosh region. I asked the Beyerskloof guy why they were at a wine festival in Hermanus and he told me they were invited as the festival is getting bigger every year and the public wants to taste other wines outside the Elgin Region. Good enough reason for me.
If you wish to purchase some wine you can at the main sponsors tent “Wine Village Hermanus”, but unfortunately they cannot carry every wine as 350 different wines are available for tasting and logistically it would be difficult to have all ready to sell. What they do is to ensure they have the best selling wine from each estate available and if you want any other you can buy from the Wine Village shop on the Sunday after the festival or buy on line and they will deliver.
I don’t want to single out any particular farm as all were very good and well presented but for me the favorites were Springfield Estate, “Life from stone Sauvignon Blanc” at R98 a bottle, Black Oystercatcher Sauvignon Blanc at R104, and Iona “One man Band” at R260 were excellent. The Raka Sauvignon Blanc at R65 is great value and a great wine.
Outside the wine tasting hall you can have some Greek lamb pita, or pulled pork sandwich from the food trailers or deep fried Oreo biscuits for dessert.
An Excellent day out having a great time with family and friends tasting top quality SA wines and creating memories.
This guy will definitely be back next year…..