Personal views can be very subjective – so why should you bother reading my reviews of wine farms?
I’m not a wine expert, but I have worked in the Tourism Industry for over 15 years. For many of those my job was to source, test and review South African tourism products on behalf of international tourists, making sure they were consistently up to scratch. I’ve inspected over 700 hotels globally in my time, so have an eye for detail, service, food and hospitality – and I’ve used this experience when reviewing the farms.
When you read about a wine farm online, often the information provided is written by a marketing team, which can make it difficult to know what it’s really like. I’m committed to visiting every wine farm listed on this site over the coming months (I’m at 60 so far), so like asking a friend, I’m here to provide a take on my own personal experience, which may help you decide whether the farm is right for you.
I’m from the UK, however have travelled extensively throughout Southern Africa for many years, both for work and pleasure (I used to live here). Well-connected in the SA tourism industry, I’m used to providing feedback to tourism bodies – and now I’m branching into wine tourism, I want to use this platform to do the same: making wine farm experiences even better. I’ll be offering constructive feedback to farms after each visit as it’s often easier for them to hear this from an independent person like me.
Sometimes this is JUST what an industry needs. As a foreigner living in South Africa, I have no ulterior motives, I’m not government-paid nor am I siding with one region over another. I just love wine farms and know every one has something going for it. I want this website to detail what those unique selling points are, so as a consumer you have the confidence to venture out and also experience all they have to offer.
As I’ve said, I’m not a wine expert, but I do love a glass of wine (or three). However it can be a mysterious industry where you can easily feel overwhelmed if you don’t understand the terminology, or how wine is made, or how to taste wine. Maybe you don’t care about any of that anyway (and that’s fine) but I won’t be using fancy terms or phrases and will be publishing simple-to-follow guides which will hopefully make these elements much more understandable, if you’re interested in that side of things.
Ultimately you don’t have to ‘trust’ my review, as I’ve approached it more as an ‘overview’ of the farm, rather than a critical review. I certainly can’t guarantee you that just because I had a great meal or experience that you will – but I WILL be able to give you a heads up about the general vibe, the decor, the quality of the food and wine, the staff, the views – and highlight the main reasons why you might want to visit. There is a famous saying in the wine industry, ‘whatever YOU taste in wine, you’re not wrong’.
There are no right or wrong places to go – just experiences to be had. I hope you find some use in the reviews!
Every wine farm has something which makes it stand apart - and we want to showcase just what that is!
From the welcome and your wine guide, to the staff in the restaurant & tasting room: warm service is a must.
We all have different personal tastes, but extra kudos goes to those wine farms punching above their weight.
We’ll factor in the quality and pricing of platters, food pairing options, meals and drinks, plus value for money.
Is it welcoming and cosy, with the needs of you as a tourist in mind? Would you want to return?
What facilities & activities are there for different types of tourists? Have these been well thought out?
Whether it be a mountain, valley, cellar or brick wall - what you look at is important and part of the experience.
Not all farms are family-friendly, but we’ll give you the low down on what there is to do if you bring the kids.
Is it difficult to find the farm? Is it stuck out on its own down a gravel road or easy to access?