Waterford Wine Estate Tasting and Drive
A wine tasting experience should always be like the experience we had at Waterford Wine Estate recently. Somewhat unfair to other wine estates as those estates don’t offer a wine drive. But the words that come to mind for me. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Flawless, unparalleled and just downright tastefully decadent.
Welcome to Waterford Wine Estate
Opulence but with an uncomplicated or pretentious feel to it, I felt completely at ease at Waterford Wine Estate. From the location to the surroundings to the professionalism and uncontrived service of all the staff.
A bottle of bubbly welcomed us upon our arrival. Where we sat sipping in the courtyard next to the relaxing sounds of a water fountain. We were given a break down of what to expect for our 2 and a half hour tour by our guide. Our guide Kenneth was more than just that, he treated us as if he was hosting in his own house.
Being an extremely hot day we gleefully guzzled our bubbly down then headed off to the winery. We were shown where all the different parts of the wine-making process take place and the how. I was very taken a back by Waterford’s keen sense of environmental awareness. As they waste nothing and re-use whatever they can to make a truly organic product. Testament to this is the fact that they have there very own water filtration process on the farm.
Do I need to say anything more about this cellar room! Kenneth gave us all the facts, a few comical anecdote’s as well while we were shown this room. But to be honest we were too overwhelmed by the beauty of this room to remember anything he said here!
We made our way out to the entrance where we climbed onto our transport – a sturdy Land Rover. (The old school kind of Land Rover – where you can drive it anywhere and over anything!)
Driving out the estate to the vineyards, Kenneth told us the History of the farm as well as explanations of the type of trees and bushes planted on the farm and their purposes. Once again this goes with what I said earlier about the mantra of the estate – environmental awareness. Waterford estate is somewhat like the perfect house – there is a place for everything and everything has a place. Tactfully coupled with the expertise of our guide/host/driver Kenneth, who is studying Environmental Conservation, make for a unique experience. Waterford have 3 Wine Drive guides, and in the words of our driver for the day, “Each of us are different in our styles and specialties, so you will always learn something new with each of the driver guides ”
Time for some wine!
Halfway up the vineyards on the sloped mountain( it seemed higher), we stopped for our first tasting. A bench awaited us under a massive Olive tree, which Kenneth proceeded to cover in white linen. After-which out came the wine accompaniments, Olives, Nuts, homemade bread and olive oils made from olives on the estate. We proceeded to drink some delicious white wines with the best being the Sauvignon Blanc.
Next stop was a drive up to the highest point of the estate where we were treated to our second tasting. White linens on a beautiful deck accompanied with new treats and 360 degree view of the surrounding wine regions of the Western Cape was in store for us. Here we were introduced to the beautiful wines including the infamous Waterford gem. Supreme wines , detailed explanations and exceptional views made this the highlight of the drive.
Chocolate and Wine Pairing
We took a slow drive back down to the tasting area and we were seated in the courtyard again to round off our tasting. Wine and homemade chocolate was the last order of the day. 3 new wines and amazing and unique sweet treats ( salt rock infused chocolate!)
Alas it was the end of our wonderful Waterford experience and if I didn’t say it before, this was a truly magnificent one in a kind treat. Thanks to Kenneth our host for the day and to Waterford for extending us the opportunity to enjoy their quality wines and hospitality.