Winter is finally over, and our daydreams about refreshing sundowners, water-side dances, and a light wardrobe are one step closer to becoming real. It’s time to soak up all the Vitamin D you’ve missed out on during winter, and indulge in the great tastes of the new season. Yes, Cape Town’s outdoor festival season is here, with a range of food and beverage experiences to choose from: sip aromatic wine next to a lush river, learn all about the latest coffee and chocolate trends, or pair oysters with local MCCs and authentic French champagne. Of course, the list goes on, but to make sure you don’t miss out on some of the top ones, Christine Hogg investigated food and beverage festivals to check out this season.
When: 29 September to 1 October 2017
Where: Urban Brewing Company, Hout Bay
What to expect: Of course there will be many places to celebrate Bavaria’s centuries-old beer festival in our fair city, but if you’re up for a real corker of a day you simply cannot go past Urban Brewing Company’s upcoming Oktoberfest! And this year’s party is shaping up to be a German extravaganza with one of Cape Town’s iconic beer institutions serving only the finest of their authentic craft brews. Urban Brewing Company’s nifty selection of craft beers will be showcased from pop-up stalls, where you can meet the makers and learn enough tricks of the trade to impress or outsmart even the most discerning of hipsters. Each ticket includes a 1L mass of commemorative Festbier on entry (the mass is for luckily keeps). Sink your teeth into a juicy bratwurst with sauerkraut, or any of the street-style delicacies and vegetarian options on offer at the food truck. You can also bank on a variety of games, on-stage competitions and live entertainment throughout the event. Those pushing through to Saturday or Sunday can treat themselves to a traditional Bavarian breakfast, coupled with live music and traditional Oktoberfest music as the backdrop. And if you ask really nice, they may even throw in a Schlager tune or two!
Urban Brewing Company has been working hard to cement our region as South Africa’s craft beer heartland. So if you’re keen to familiarise yourself with the art of craft beer, dust off those Lederhosens and barmaid outfits and enjoy off the sunny weekend for an authentic Oktoberfest atmosphere.
Ticket Prices: R100 via Quicket, or R140 at gate entrance. Table and group bookings are essential.
Where to book: Pre-order through Quicket, or buy at entry.
Website: www.urbanbrewery.co.za | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org| Tel: 021 791 1130
When: 3 & 4 November 2017
Where: GrandWest Sun Park
What to expect: Since 2011, the TOPS at SPAR Bierfest has been offering a Bavarian beer culture experience in Cape Town. The organisers promise an “oompah-fueled celebration” with “a massive brauhaus, biers, bands, eisbeins, bootiful frauleins, und beefy bierboys”. Festival-goers have the opportunity to taste the Royal Bavaria beer especially brewed for the occasion, as well as a local craft beer by Newlands Spring Brewing Co. And, of course, there’ll be some German delicacies to raise energy levels for the activities. Ticket options include various platters filled with wursts, meats, cheeses and giant pretzels. Entertainment is provided by Songscape Oompah Band, local comedian Brendan Murray, as well as The Rockerfellas, who are known to get a party going with a mash-up of throw-back tunes and dazzling costumes.
Ticket Prices: R115 – R1795
Where to book: Tickets on Tap
Specials: There are a range of value-for-money ticket options designed to suit all budgets. This year, the organisers have added a brand new, all-inclusive ticket option: The Braumeister Prima package. It comes with a traditional Bavarian costume (lederhosen for Hans or dirndl for Heidi), as well as all the features of a regular Braumeister package (drink tokens, three-course meals and some other goodies). Visit the Bierfest wesbite to view all the ticket options available.
Website: www.bierfest.co.za | Email: email@example.com | Tel: 021 824 3132
When: 20 to 22 October 2017
Where: Goudmyn Farm, Robertson
What to expect: Taking place in a country setting right next to the Breede River, the 12th annual Wine on the River is a family event that offers a variety of wine offerings, activities and entertainment. For youngsters, there are boat cruises, horse and tractor rides, as well as a dedicated kids-area. Adults can do interactive wine tastings with a local wine maker in the new #TastetheLifestyle tent, buy wines at cellar-door prices from almost 30 wineries throughout the festival, and listen to live music. Festival-goers also have access to free Wi-Fi, and can enter the third annual Duck Derby (winners receive R5000 cash!) as well as various lucky draws. According to the organisers, this is an event to “unwind, relax and enjoy fresh country air, beautiful scenery and warm spring sunshine with an array of delightful treats, local country cuisines and great music.”
Wine on the River has a zero tolerance policy towards drinking and driving – complimentary shuttle services will be available from central spots in Robertson, Bonnievale and Montagu to the event on Saturday. There are also day in-and-out trips available from Cape Town, with local taxis available as well.
Ticket Prices: R120 – R280 | free entrance for children under 18 (children’s activities work on a ‘pay-as-you-go-system’) | interactive wine tastings are R70pp per slot.
Where to book: Webtickets
Specials: Until 30 September, you can purchase an Early Bird Weekend ticket for R250
Website: www.wineonriver.com | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Tel: 023 626 3167
When: 6 to 8 October 2017
Where: Durbanville Race Course
What to expect: Running for five years in a row and for the second time in Cape Town, this year’s Coffee and Chocolate Expo is all about sensation. “The show is a new experience with several different sensational areas designed to transfer a Coffee & Chocolate extravaganza like never before,” say the organisers. Not only are there opportunities to taste a plethora of decadent chocolates and coffees, there’s also a chance to watch the masters and learn how to make them. Kees Beyers and his culinary chocolatiers display some of their latest recipes in the Beyers Chocolate Workshop, and champion baristas battle it out for the title of Western Cape Champion of Latte Art & Cup Tasters in the Speciality Coffee Association of South Africa (SCASA) Coffee Theatre. Attendees can also sample whiskey, wine and liqueurs with chocolate in the Pairing Theatre or listen to SA’s up-and-coming artists in the Cocoa Mokka Music Lounge. It’s a family-friendly event with over 80 coffee and chocolate products to experience, as well as free parking facilities.
Ticket Prices: R100 online and at the door, kids under 10 are free
Where to book: iTickets
Specials: Tickets are R80 on Friday 6 October (Trade & Public Day)
Website: www.coffeechoc.co.za | Email: email@example.com | Tel: 082 563 3332
When: 28 & 29 October 2017
Where: Durbanville Wine Valley
What to expect: To celebrate the beginning of white wine season, Season of Sauvignon is a family-friendly festival aimed at celebrating wine produced in the Durbanville Wine Valley – an area renowned for top-quality Sauvignon Blanc. Involving 10 wine farms –D’Aria, Diemersdal, De Grendel, Durbanville Hills, Hillcrest, Klein Roosboom, Meerendal, Nitida, Groot Phizantekraal and Signal Gun – this event offers a detailed entertainment programme for children and adults. Each establishment will have unique offerings that suit their concept and style, giving all attendees a variety of options to choose from. Durbanville Wine Valley is situated on the urban edge of Cape Town (a 30-minute drive), and is often referred to as a must-see wine area. According to the event organiser, the area is all about “warm hospitality, rich flavours, exceptional wines and engaging experiences.”
When: 14 & 15 October 2017
Where: Hillcrest Quarry, Durbanville
What to expect: At Durbanville’s annual Oyster and Champagne Festival, festival-goers have the opportunity to indulge in oysters, champagnes, MCCs and sparkling wines while listening to live music. Moët is set to represent authentic French Champagne, but there’ll also be a variety of locally made Méthode Cap Classiques available such as JC Le Roux or Pongrac, and international bubblys, such as Italian Prosecco and Spanish Cava. For those who prefer non-alcoholic drinks, Uber Flavours offer a variety of all-natural iced teas, and – if you’re into adding some culinary skills to your repertoire – celebrity chef Sue-Ann Allen will be demonstrating some of her tricks over the weekend. Beyond Oysters, there’ll also be a selection of food such as fresh sushi, gourmet burgers, curries, French crepes and ice cream. This year’s theme is Gold and White, and guests and couples are encouraged to dress up to stand a chance to win prizes.
Ticket Prices: R160 | tickets include a branded champagne glass and five free tasting coupons (no under 18’s allowed)
Where to book: Computicket
Specials: Glasses and coupons are available to purchase during the event.
Facebook: Oyster and Campagne Festival | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Tel: 061 004 7410
Helderberg Craft Beer Fest
When: 17 February 2018
Where: Southey’s Vines, Somerset West
What to expect: With fourteen craft brewers and several food vendors confirmed for Helderberg Craft Beer Fest 2018, the event promises to be “bigger and better” than 2017. “Bring your friends and family for a fun day of craft beer, music and entertainment,” says organiser Simon Mills. Beyond craft beer, expect wine and other drink options, as well as a comprehensive line-up of live music. Musicians on the bill include Sam & Calla, Mark Haze, Lee Berg, Ebenezer Ginsberg and Dave Mason, and there is a kids’ entertainment programme from 12pm to 5pm. All proceeds go to charities in the Helderberg area.