Here’s another video from my South Africa trip: inside our hotel room at Le Quartier Francais in Franschhoek!
Apologies for the SA onslaught, because if I don’t post ASAP, I feel like it’s never going to happen. (Or, it’ll be sometime in May and I’ll say, “Hey, remember when I went to South Africa 6 months ago? So, yeah, here are photos and videos from that.”)
The 4th leg of our trip took us to the winelands outside Cape Town. South Africa has a ton of Dutch influence, but there’s also quite of bit of French influence, particularly in Franschhoek, a winery town with ridiculous scenery. While the nearby town of Stellenbosch gets arguably more attention, Franschhoek (which means “French corner” in Dutch) is the food and wine capital of South Africa and is an absolute must-see.
T. and I spent 2 nights at Le Quartier Francais, a boutique hotel in the middle of town which houses The Tasting Room, repeatedly named one of the best French restaurants in the world. (The day we ate there, Chef Margot Janse had just been crowned South African Chef of the Year!)
Our room overlooked a courtyard with a private pool, had delightfully funky, colorful decor, and included complimentary whiskey, gin, sherry and brandy. (Because after wine tasting, you might still be really, really thirsty.)
The beds were comfortable, the water pressure in the shower was good, the views were stellar and the food was divine. Oh, lord, the food.
Instagram has turned me into one of those annoying people who take photo after photo of their meals, like I’ve never seen salmon tartare before. It’s a sickness, really.
But when you’re having a 5-course food-and-wine pairing at The Tasting Room? It’s sort of mandatory.
By the way, everything is South Africa is sort of devastatingly cheap. The lavish, over-the-top, Per Se-esque meal that T. and I had at The Tasting Room ended up being about $100 a person. The same sort of thing in LA or New York City would run you about 8 times more.
T. and I visited a couple of great wineries, including Moreson (where we had lunch at Bread & Wine, and I partook of this oyster and champagne deliciousness):
And La Motte, where I got up close and personal with the barrels. I really like wine:
This weekend was apparently the Magic of Bubbles Cap Classique & Champagne Festival in Franschhoek, which I would have loved to have stuck around for. Alas, we will just have to make a return trip for it. T. and I also took a Historical Walking Tour, which was fun not only to see all the beautiful Cape Dutch architecture in Franschhoek, but also to learn a little more about the history of the French Huguenots who settled there. (Yes. We are dorks.)
Whenever you find yourself in South Africa, I cannot recommend Franschhoek, Le Quartier Francais and The Tasting Room more highly. They are all complete and utter must-sees.
Thanks to Le Quartier Francais for hosting us, and to Bread & Wine, Moreson and La Motte for delicious hosted meals and tastings! While our stay at Le Quartier Francais was comped, as always, all opinions remain my own.