Why Exotic Wine Pairings In South Africa’s Winelands Should Be At The Top Of Your Holiday Bucket List

07 Mar 2022

Exotic Wine Pairings

Unique and unusual wine pairings in South Africa’s sun-drenched winelands have been causing a buzz. Nothing beats sipping on award-winning South African wines in the heart of the country’s awe-inspiring vineyards but today you can forego the typical cheese and biscuits for exotic food pairings like chocolate, nougat, and ice-cream. Whether you’re a serious connoisseur or a novice wine lover you’ll find your perfect match on our list of exciting South African wine tasting experiences.

Wine and chocolate

Exotic Wine Pairings

Waterford Estate – Stellenbosch Wine Route

The combination of wine and chocolate is a match made in heaven, best described in one word – Yum! The Wine and Chocolate Tasting at Waterford Estate is a unique flavour experience. The estate’s renowned winemaker Kevin Arnold together with, Chocolatier, Richard von Geusau have created a series of dark and milk chocolates that, when paired with their Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Natural Sweet wine, results in a flavour sensation, unlike any other. Savour the spicy Shiraz with Masala Chai Dark Chocolate, or the Cabernet Sauvignon with the richness of Rock Salt Dark Chocolate. End on a sweet note with Rose Geranium Milk Chocolate and a tantalising natural sweet dessert wine.

MCC and macarons

Exotic Wine Pairings

Canto – Durbanville Wine Route

The South African version of champagne is of course Méthode Cap Classique (MCC) and Canto in the rolling hills of Durbanville has created four delicious varieties at their boutique winery.

The macaron is a sweet and luscious French confection which makes for a delightful indulgence when paired with champagne as the bubbles fizz and the macaron melts in your mouth. Canto’s take on this effervescent blend of bubbles and confection is their signature Macaron and MCC tasting experience. In a modern tasting room, you’ll get to match each MCC with four distinct flavours of sweet macarons.

The buttery and earthy flavours of the Chardonnay MCC is highlighted by the rich nutty flavours in the Hazelnut macaron. The Red Velvet macaron is unusually rich in flavour, and it complements the fullness of raspberry and spicy flavours of the Shiraz Rose MCC Brut. The Turkish Delight macaron has a slight rosewater/muscat flavour to it which compliments the delicate strawberry flavours of the Pino Noir MCC Brut while the Pinot Noir/Chardonnay MCC Brut with the Salted Caramel macaron is a sweet and salty combination inspired by the combination of freshness from the Chardonnay and the cherry flavours of the Pinot noir.

Wine and fynbos cupcakes

Exotic Wine Pairings

Delheim – Stellenbosch Wine Route

Delheim Estate is situated high on the slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain famed for its breath-taking views and family hospitality. The cupcake and wine pairing has long been a staple at Delheim but now they’ve added a new fragrant local twist to the tasting experience. Four fynbos-inspired cupcakes have been paired with four award-winning wines to showcase the excellence of this estate’s fine wines. This next-level experience puts the Cape’s famous Floral Kingdom as well as Delheim’s eco-friendly winemaking practice firmly on the map. The Honeybush cupcake is set to bring out the fruity flavours of their Chardonnay, whilst the Buchu cupcake is a surprising pair to the scarce varietal of the farm, Gewürztraminer. Delheim’s Merlot matches well with the Fynbos Honey cupcake and to end it off on a high note, the Rooibos cupcake brings out the dark and warm spicy flavours of the Pinotage.

Wine, MCC and ice-cream

Exotic Wine Pairings

Clos Malverne – Stellenbosch Wine Route

Ice-cream, wine and MCC might seem like odd bedfellows but there is a reason this has become Clos Malverne’s signature tasting experience. Forget ‘chocolate and vanilla’ we’re talking ice cream flavour combos like Koeksister and Coffee, Black Sesame, or Biltong & Caramelised Onion ice cream.

In the Koeksister and Coffee ice cream the sweetness of the koeksister highlights the floral notes of the Chardonnay whilst the coffee compliments the slight oak of the wine. The Black Sesame ice cream compliments the smoky undertones of the Pinotage and includes a treat of white sesame crumble for a bit of sweetness to highlight the fruit of the wine and add some extra crunch

The Biltong & Caramelised Onion ice cream paired with Clos Malverne Merlot is sultry and delicious. The biltong enhances the smokiness of this wine, while the saltiness of the meat cuts through the oak. An added touch of sweetness from the caramelised onions, highlights the fruit of the Merlot.

While the ice cream flavour combinations change with the seasons you can always expect four heavenly homemade scoops of gourmet ice cream to perfectly accompany four carefully selected wines.

Wine and marshmallows

Exotic Wine Pairings

Perdeberg Winery – Paarl Wine Route

Perdeberg Winery is nestled in the foothills of the Paardeberg Mountain in Paarl and in addition to artisanal chocolates, nougat and chocolate truffles, the most interesting new food trend, the humble marshmallow has now made it onto the wine tasting menu. You’ll be dazzled by a line-up of five wines served along with a variety of soft, sweet, and chewy mallows in designer flavours.

These mouth-watering artisanal handmade, gourmet marshmallows offer a taste sensation starting with the Rosewater flavoured marshmallow which mingles well with their bubbly. It’s then on to the tart Raspberry marshmallow which is a tangy hit with the Sparkling Rosé. Their scarcer cultivars, the Grenache Blanc and Cinsault, are perfectly paired with zesty Lime and Cherry flavours, whilst the sweet Chenin with the delicious Marmalade and Honeycomb marshmallow is guaranteed to tantalise the tastebuds.

Wine and fudge

Exotic Wine Pairings

Jakkalsvlei – Klein Karoo Wine Route

Jakkalsvlei is one of the Garden Route’s most popular destinations. For first-time visitors, it’s usually love at first sight after experiencing the vineyard, mountain views and their many delicious wine tasting experiences. Their most unique offering however is their fudge and wine pairing.

If you have a sweet tooth, you’re in for a treat, decadence is the name of the game here and this dessert worthy culinary journey will include the Strawberries and Cream fudge with a natural sweet Pink Moscato, Coffee and Whiskey fudge with a coffee driven Pinotage, Milk Tart fudge with an elegant Mount Cuveé, Swiss Chocolate fudge with a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon and Turkish Delight fudge with a juicy syrupy Red Muscadel.

Wine and rooibos

Exotic Wine Pairings

Klawer Cellars – Namaqua West Coast Wine Route

Rooibos is synonymous with South Africa and is enjoyed mainly as a tea both locally and around the world. The rooibos bush can only be found on the slopes of the Cederberg Mountains in South Africa and Klawer Cellars is celebrating this iconic home-grown product by combining it with their award-winning wines.

Your epicurean adventure begins with a Klawer Chardonnay paired with Skuinskoek (a local doughnut speciality) with a topping of rooibos jam, followed by the Villa Esposto Chenin Blanc and rooibos fudge. Next a rooibos drizzle and local olive oil accompany the Villa Esposto Rosé which makes way for the reds. The Klawer Pinotage is served with a rooibos biscotti followed by the Klawer Cabernet Sauvignon which comes with rooibos soya sauce and cheddar. The finale of the experience is the solo debut of their delicious African Ruby Rooibos infused wine.

Additional pairings at Klawer Cellars include fudge, nougat, and truffles in an array of delectable flavours, look out for the apricot nougat and lemon or banana truffles.

Wine and doughnuts

Exotic Wine Pairings

Wellington Wines – Wellington Wine Route

The combination of knowledge and passion over the years, has made Wellington Wines a wine producer of outstanding characteristics, implementing innovative methods to ensure that sheer delight is experienced with every sip of their wines. They love to adapt to trends and commerative days so it’s well worth keeping an eye out for interesting new pairings.

A permanent fixture in their charming tasting room is the Duke and Doughnut pairing which highlights their popular Duke of Wellington range of wines accompanied by four scrumptious doughnuts

Their Chenin Blanc is paired with a doughnut on a bed of cinnamon sugar and sprinkled with coconut flakes while the White Pinotage is served with a doughnut draped in marmalade and ginger snaps. The Cabernet Sauvignon is paired with a wine infused raisin syrup doughnut, finished off with almond flakes while the Pinotage matches well with both a white and dark chocolate doughnut.

While these estate experiences are sure to make you want to hop on the next plane to South Africa, they are just the tip of the iceberg. South Africa is home to a plethora of Wineries offering rare and one-off wine pairings that are designed to please the palate and evoke feelings of intense joy. You’ll find sensational savoury pairings like wine and oysters or biltong and charcuterie. If you are feeling adventurous there’s wine and artisanal salt or wine and candyfloss, not to mention the multi-sensory pairings such as wine and music or wine and art, so it’s really worth doing some homework to find your ultimate ‘grape escape’. If you are ready to whet your whistle and wow your senses in the famous Cape winelands get hold of us today on UK 01233 80 27 27 or check out our website www.bestofsouthafricatravel.com

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Best holiday EVER!

Hi Ash, all back safe and sound, and well, here’s the thing... Andy says it was his best holiday EVER! And what he loved was that there was always something next on the agenda to look forward to...

Andy’s parents were blown away by the whole experience and will no doubt be repeat customers at least once -  You are …

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