So! My posting has been a little sketchy of late. Well, that’s because we were in South Africa. And Belgium. And Slovenia. When I got home, everyone asked me to give them ONE highlight. And as far as I can tell, THIS is my highlight — the Franschhoek Wine Tram!
How could I not be smiling? Did you hear that hilariously awesome music? It was just the most fun day I’ve ever spent and I highly recommend it.
So! Franschhoek is a wine region in South Africa. If you’re into reading South African wine labels, you’ve probably heard of Stellenbosch. Anyway, Franschhoek is a smaller (some might say prettier?) region right next to Stellenbosch.
Franschhoek is very much influenced by the French. It was settled by French Huguenots in the 1600’s. They were Protestants and being a Protestant in France in the 1600’s sucked, so many of them hurried over to South Africa and established vineyards in the Franschhoek and Stellenbosch regions. This is personally interesting to me because I’ve recently learned that there’s a teeny tiny touch of Huguenot in my background. Excellent.
From our hotel in Franschhoek, it was a short, easy walk to the wine tram booth on main street. We were led to a bus, which then ushered us to the wine tram!
It’s a cute hop-on, hop-off mode of transportation through the beautiful vineyards of Franschhoek. You’re basically a tremendous fool if you visit the region and visit vineyards and DON’T do the wine tram. There were some guys at one of the vineyards we visited, and they were DRIVING themselves from vineyard to vineyard. DON’T DO THAT.
Waiting for the wine tram at Mont Rochelle… happy as a clam. And this is only our first stop!
It was the dead of winter in South Africa… so no leaves on the vines… BUT, still beautiful and green!
La Couronne — such delicious wine, AND THEY GAVE US CHOCOLATE! I found the pairings exquisite.
Chocolate, sunshine, white wine, beautiful surroundings, cool weather, and my beloved husband = VERY happy me.
Starting to maybe walk a little funny. (Like I needed an excuse.)
At Holden Manz. They only had red wine. I told them of my allergy to red wine, and I felt like they wanted to push me in front of the tram. BUT then they found me a blush wine I could taste.
At La Bourgogne. This may have been my favourite, because of the small family farm atmosphere… complimentary fresh-pressed olive oil tasting… and special “white honey” wine. They gave me two glasses of it! Yes. La Bourgogne is my favourite. These people are wonderful, and make wonderful wine and olive oil.
Here comes the tram!
Okay, now I’ve started photobombing Andrew’s pictures of the tram. NO REGRETS!
At Grande Provence. As you can see, we were basically alone. Actually there was another couple with us, but we chose to sit at separate tables. Because why not spread out a little?
And here’s all the wine they were pouring for the four of us. They were generous.
This photo pretty much sums of the end of the day and the entirety of our experience. Sunlit, breezy, beautiful.
We were dropped off back at the booth at the end of the day, and it took us about 2 minutes to walk back to our hotel. Being indoors for the first time all day, it’s like all the wine went straight to our heads at once, and we fell asleep immediately.
But our day wasn’t done! This is a two-part adventure! However, this post is long enough. More later!