Although it is somewhat of a cliché to call a wine estate a 'hidden gem', to me, that's just what Bellevue Estate is. Although the white wall and the name is clearly visible from Bottleray Road, the peaceful garden and restaurant patio is not. I was really pleasantly surprised at just how truly awesome this place is.
As we walked into the wine tasting area, we were greeted by Sophia. She has been at Bellevue for 26 years and her love and passion for the estate shows in the way in which she handled us. You could clearly see her love of her wines and the estate itself. Having grown up here, she was obviously very knowledgeable about the history of the estate and she explained the wines to us with such pride. This pride was not unwarranted as the wines very really fantastic!
The inside tasting area is very cosy - I immediately spotted the fireplace (see below) and I would definitely recommend coming in winter.
But the outside area was where we sat, because, just look at it (see below). On the day we went, it was exceptionally hot, so we sat on the patio area, which was under cover, but still open.
The typical wine tasting costs R40 for five wines, which is very reasonable. Because we were invited, we got treated to a tasting of eight wines (winning). I was really pleasantly surprised by these wines!
This one below was a tasting of the PK Morkel Pinotage 2010. It's a full-bodied wine, with blackberry, plum and raspberry flavours on the nose, and ripe fruit and light oaky flavours on the palate. It's really smooth and costs R225. Although I really loved it, you could buy a cheaper bottle of wine and enjoy it just as much. The Cinsaut 2015 costs just R70 and it was lovely, as was the 'normal' Bellevue Pinotage 2012 for R100.
They also have a Muscat d' Alexandrie 2017 which is quite sweet and tastes like litchis. I think that wine is ideal to have with cheese platters and it costs just R50.
If you have a look on their website, you will see their various vineyards and where each cultivar of wine is grown, which is really cool.
They also have a pretty decent food menu, offering wood-fired pizzas and various mains, which include: fish and chips, a burger, two pastas, ribs and steak. They also offer a cheese platter and a charcuterie platter. The restaurant is quite new and I think it's only a matter of time before it becomes really busy during the week too - as it's very popular over the weekend. The pizza oven (see below) is on the left side of the patio if you are sitting on it, looking out and it's great to see your pizza going into the oven.
When we saw the pizza oven, we knew we had to order a pizza! We opted for the Cinsaut Pizza (see below) for R130. It's toppings included bacon, caramelized onion, brie cheese, roasted corn and thyme oil. It was so delicious and cooked perfectly, with a thin base.
We also thought we'd try the charcuterie platter (see below) as it sounded quite nice. It costs R100 for one person and R200 for two people. We just ordered the one for one person as we were sharing a pizza too.
The platter includes: prosciutto, salami, bresaola, pickles and olives.
I was so excited to take the photo that I took it without the baguette (see below) which comes included in the price. This platter was fantastic. I think R100 is really reasonable for everything that it included. The mustard was a nice added touch and paired together nicely with the meats.
I'm not really a dessert person, but the dessert options looked cool. I liked the fact that, if you ordered a dessert, you got a complimentary cup of Nespresso Caramel or Vanilla Coffee (bonus). If you like sweet treats, you'll be tempted by the Chocolate Tart or Baked Cheesecake, but I thought the Whole Baked Camembert with honey and walnuts for R65 sounded amazing! I'll definitely be going back for that when it's a bit cooler.
It's also really kid-friendly, with a cool kid's play area (see below). You can sit on the grass area and quite easily see your kids playing, and, although I am not a Mom, I think it is quite safe.
We truly enjoyed ourselves at Bellevue. There are, however, a few flies. But they really do their best to assist with this - they bring you candles and they have little pots with lemon slices and cloves to help deter the flies. Also, it is a farm, and, in summer, flies are just everywhere and can't be helped.
It's an awesome spot and I'd really recommend it for the whole family!
Contact: 021 865 2054
Address: Bottelary Road, Koelenhof, Stellenbosch, Western Cape, 7605
Star Rating: ****
Note: We were treated to this wine pairing experience by On The Marque PR & Communications and Bellevue Wine Estate.
Additional Note: Although Bellevue Estate was aware of our presence the first time, I came a second time (to write this blog post) and had amazing service, again. I ordered this very yummy Caesar Salad (see below) for R70 and a glass of Sauvignon Blanc for R30. I will also be back again to write more blog posts as it's just so awesome here! 🙂
P.S: I found out the second time I came here that they have a Pizza and Wine Platter. It costs just R80 for a small square of four of their pizzas, paired with four of the wines: Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinotage and Shiraz! 🙂 I will definitely be back for that!