We recently received an invitation from Carolyn and JC Martin at Creation Wines to “come enjoy some of our superb wines and wonderful food” and as we say in this house “rude not to dahling”.
I was a bit concerned about whether they now had a proper road. Last time we visited a wine farm in the area the road turned to gravel quite a distance from Creation Wines and we unfortunately never made it there. I needn’t have feared. Salomie, Carolyn’s super efficient and charming assistant confirmed that, yes they do now have proper road, all the way to Caledon apparently. We arranged to stay at the rather nice Ocean Eleven (www.oceaneleven.co.za) guest house on Westcliffe in Hermanus.
Coincidentally right next door to Ocean Eleven is number nine Westcliffe. Number nine is a sweet little bed and breakfast called The Right Room which is owned and run by two of the most delightful and knowledgeable Ladies (sisters) Honey and Barbara. Now, dear reader this was the first place I stayed in upon my first visit to Hermanus thirteen years ago almost to the day! I digress, lets return to the plot!
We arrived at exactly 12.20pm after a leisurely drive from Cape Town having stopped off, and back in time, at Houw Hoek Inn for breakfast. We arrived after breakfast service was done so we had a bit of a wait. Fortunately the food was superb good old fashioned hearty fayre, that would “stick to your ribs” as my Gran would say, bless her.
Ocean Eleven is extremely easy to locate and perfectly positioned on the cliffs of Westcliffe Road. Fabulous!
We were promptly shown to our suite which was beautifully appointed with views to die for. Que luquo guapeton, one could feel a good weekend appearing on the horizon.
At 12.30pm the Safari-Style Wine www.hermanuswinehoppers.co.za vehicle arrived to whisk us away to our destination some twenty minutes away secreted away in the rolling hills of the beautiful and mesmerising Hemel en Aarde Valley.
Creation can be found on www.creationwines.com and also Facebook at www.Facebook.com/creationwines as well as twitter @creationwines.
The estate set in 80 hectares I believe, is in a stunning locale and was looking especially beautiful on the day with all the wonderful autumn colours exploding on the vines. Quite special really. The Restaurant and tasting rooms are a superb modern, yet rustic mix adding another fascinating dimension to the estate.
We were welcomed by the lovely and engaging Carolyn who showed us to our table and proceeded to open a delightful bottle of 2015 Creation Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon blend. Just what the doctor didn’t order, but perfect for us tired and thirsty travelers!
Carolyn explained that she and her husband, Jean-Claude, have wine and hospitality “in their blood” and although they had both taken ‘the scenic route’ as it were, it was inevitable that they would make their livelihood in the industry eventually.
They bought the land that is now Creation Estate back in 2002, from a couple of sheep farmers, whose families had walked the land for generations, it seems.
They now produce in way excess of 300,000 bottles of their superb wines, every year!!. I recall thinking that they needed to if the number of eagerly imbibing customers currently present, was anything to go by! Thank goodness for Hermanus Wine Hoppers. This service really is the best and safest way to make your way around the wine estates in Hermanus.
The restaurant provides numerous wine tasting and food pairing options 364 days of the year as well as wine and chocolate pairings, cheese pairing and charcuterie platters. All ranging from R105 to R430 per person.
Every course that we were presented with (seven in all I think?) was superb both in content and presentation. Carolyn told us that they change the tasting menu almost weekly. The work they put in to make the experience absolutely bliss is inspiring.
We tasted wines from both their labels; Creation and Whale Pod.
The red wines on offer include Bordeaux blends, Pinot Noirs and Merlots to name but a few. My personal favourite being the 2014 Creation Merlot Reserve.
Having said that I must of course tell you about the exciting whites available (we tried most of those also if I recall).
In particular, the Creation Chardonnay lingered on my tongue. The Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon is superb as well as the Pinot Rosé currently being prepared for release later this year. We tried it and it is superb.
Well, dear reader I truly hope that I have wet your appetite sufficiently to encourage you to venture out to the Hemel en Aarde Valley very soon, in particular to visit the breath taking beauty and stunning wines of Creation.