February is generally the hottest month of the year – and 23rd February was NO exception. Temperatures of mid-30’s were expected! We set out from Tableview and got caught in horrendous traffic – because of an accident along Koeberg Road we elected to travel along the R27 and branch off on the N1 Paarl before our pick up in Constantia. This delayed us by about 15 minutes.
Nevertheless, we were soon on our way along the beach road near Muizenberg, and this always has a calming effect on all on the coach – the perfect day coupled with a blue sea with many fishermen and groups of children eagerly waiting on a sand dune – excited about a day on the beach!
Our first stop was at Parmalat, just outside Stellenbosch – always a good stop! Their Factory shop – a little goldmine with excellent prices. Cheeses / yoghurts / very quickly loaded into baskets. Some of the ladies went up to the Consol factory shop! Amazing how women LOVE to shop!
Next stop was Middelvlei Wine Estate along the road past Oude Libertas. This estate specialises in giving people a true South African experience. They have a big braai set up where staff cook do the cooking.
On arrival you are served Potbrood with Snoek Pate or Jam – a very South African experience!
Then dishes arrive with divine Pumpkin Fritters (very South African); Potato Salad and a Green Salad – this is accompanied by Lamb Chops ; Boerewors ; and a Honey Mustard Chicken Kebab and need I say, they still add Braaibroodjies (delicious toasted sandwiches with cheese mixed with tomato and onion) done on the braai – Scrumptious. This is rounded off with a cup of Moerkoffie! (Another South African experience – help-yourself at the braai)
After all this food, no wonder that quite a few people took “Padkos” home with them– yet another South African tradition!
To sum up Middelvlei – it is a very worthwhile South African experience! Even though we’re all locals a Braai is not always enjoyed by people living alone! Too much effort to light up a fire to cook a few chops!
Our day ended with yet more ‘gathering’ – a stop at Zetler’s and their well-stocked store along the road near Spier. Everyone went home quite happy with packets galore!
One of the ladies on tour said to me – “Carol why do you bring us to such good places and then tell us we have to go-home” – a fitting tribute to Middelvlei and their relaxed atmosphere that instantly calms folk!