A JEWEL OF A WEEKEND
A SWEET SUITE
I recently succumbed to the ultimate, hedonistic treat – to ‘wine down’ at the luxurious jewel of the winelands, Delaire Graff Estate. Delaire Graff offers an unparalled setting, with every aspect of their hospitality on par with the view. After admiring the intimate attention to detail (like a bottle of my favourite Delaire Graff rosé, face masks and a treat box overflowing with yummy snacks) in our superior suite, we wandered down to the winery. A wine tasting is included in their ‘wine down’ weekend package. And what a tasting it was – five estate wines with eloquent commentary, against the eye-catching backdrop of the Bankoek mountains. A dip in our heated rim-flow pool provided the perfect end to the week.
SUPERIOR…ALL THE WAY
We were spoilt with breakfast in bed – simple, as space needed to be reserved for what would be a memorable lunch. Cappuccino and shakshuka with salami gave us sufficient fuel to trudge to the highest peak of the estate, and drink in the sweeping vineyard and mountain vista. The Dylan Lewis sculptures always catch my eye. When the spa called offering a cancellation I had no choice but to leave my man lazing at the pool, whilst I indulged myself with the ultimate facial.
Lunch called. Three-plated Indochine is taking diners on a signature travel menu – an epicurean journey to Japan during September as part of their ‘Passport to Asia’ celebration. Diners have been enjoying the cuisine of Asian countries like India, Myanmar, Thailand and Taiwan (and collecting stamps for their passports). October sees them showcasing the best dishes in each of them. Chef Virgil Kahn has an inimitable talent for translating the flavours of another country into our local produce. We sat outside on the crisp Spring day, and as the amuse bouche arrived, I knew we were in for an unforgettable treat. I chose a glass of Indopops, my man went for the estate wine pairing (R395).
FEAST OF FLAVOURS
A three-course lunch at a very palatable R550 transported us back to Japan. The tuna takaki with sesame, shoyu and wasabi oil was sublime. The wakame salad, a wagyu toastie and takoyaki, with their seductive flavours, had us entranced. The intermediate course of kakiage and prawn dumplings with roe, yuzu koshu and white soya dashi, made impact. Japanese flavours are dignified and restrained, yet the umami makes it reach a crescendo. The main event was a sous-vide beef sirloin with teriyaki, turnip, chawanmushi and pickles (paired with the DG Shiraz 2019). The delectable dessert – yuzu and rice, with craquelin, sesame praline, cheesecake and Sancho ice cream was perfectly paired with the DG Sunburst.
Everyone on the estate makes you feel like you are the only guests there. You matter. We ran out of time to truly appreciate all the art and culture on offer. The challenge was to do nothing, or everything. A bit of both made us feel that we had not only visited Japan, but that we had been to heaven and back, no passport required.