Wacky Wine Weekend is set to take place 31 May to 3 June 2018, and if you want to make the most of the weekend you should start planning now. Each year this wine festival draws massive crowds to the Robertson valley, so you should jump to secure accommodation and the best spots at festival events.
Personally I like to skip the crowded festival tents and popular pitstops and instead head out to the hidden gems and more intimate experiences, which really show off the heart of this valley.
Ready to start planning your weekend? Here are a few highlights I’ve tried and that I can recommend:
What to do at Wacky Wine Weekend:
De Wetshof, the pristine estate outside Robertson, is hosting a variety of tastings. Try sparkling wines from the Robertson Valley, sip their famous Chardonnay, learn more about Cabernet Sauvignon and enjoy a feast of Sauvignon Blanc. They’ve also teamed up with Mimosa Restaurant for a seasonal menu exclusively for the festival. Tastings start at R25 pp and bookings are essential.
Join a 4×4 safari through the vineyards and pomegranate orchards, then sip your way through their wine selection and sample their pomegranate concentrate – it will knock your socks off, promise. They are also hosting a food pairing at the restaurant on Friday. Bookings are essential.
Lord’s Wines sits at the very end of the wine valley, through the town of McGregor. They are hosting live entertainment and barrel tastings, and you can also join them for a Burger & Barrels event on Friday night.
Ilse Schutte is the local Garagiste, making really special wines from her very tiny garage in the heart of McGregor. You can join her for a wine blending experience and book for a intimate dinner on Friday or Saturday.
Sip some delicious MCC while enjoying food truck treats, oysters and picturesque views. You can also book a tutored bubbly tasting with tapas for Friday night.
Tanagra specializes in beautifully crafter aperitifs, from Grappa to Eau de Vie and more. You can pop in any time through the weekend, no bookings required.
Esona hosts a interesting tasting experience with Riedel wine glasses, fruit preserves, chocolate and music, which all influence the way a wine tastes. You can follow this with a lovely Sauvignon Blanc platter while taking in the gorgeous scenery from their top-floor restaurant.
Book for the underground wine tasting experience at Weltevrede where you can taste their best wines by candlelight.
This little gem is tucked away to one end of the valley and produces really special wines. You can also join them for a 4 course dinner on Saturday night where you’ll enjoy country cuisine with the family (they have spectacular stories to share), all paired with top wines.
On Thursday night you can enjoy a five course meal prepared on a braai, paired with five Excelsior Wines. You can also visit the farm through the weekend to try your hand at wine blending and take home your personalised bottle.
Zandvliet recently renovated their tasting area, creating a slick and comfortable space where you can enjoy delicious, decadent wines as well as a range of Clemengold products (try the gin, it’s very yummy). They are also hosting a dinner and dance under fairy lights on Friday and Saturday evening, with a 3 course dinner and live music by Gerald Clarke.
You can download the full program HERE.
Where to stay:
I’ve stayed at these spots and can vouch for them.
Jam Harmsgat – get some friends together and book the entire slave lodge.
Lord’s Guest Lodge – book one of the cottages for a luxurious stay.
Windfall Guest Cottages – a great, affordable option.
You can view more accommodation options HERE.
Details for Wacky Wine Weekend
Dates: 31 May to 3 June 2018
Tickets: R200 per person, Webtickets.