S: South Africa April & May 2011
FC: South Africa | 2011
1: South Africa | April & May 2011 | The wedding of Greg and Jess Longe & Wine Tasting in the Cape Winelands
2: Breakfast with our nephew Greg and his bride-to-be Jess on our first morning | Greg & Jess arranged an afternoon tea at Belcharto Barns and Cottages in Stellenbosch the day before the wedding so the extended family members could meet.
3: The Groom - Jess's family painted Greg's face and wrapped him in a blanket to symbolize a Lobola ceremony - an African custom where the bride price is negotiated with her father. No cattle were exchanged at this ceremony!!! | Our niece Mandy with Gavin | Hazel & Robyn - Gavin's mother & sister | The future Mrs. Longe!
4: back: Hazel Waugh, Moira Longe, Mandy Longe, Robyn Longe, Megan Longe; front: Justine Longe, Jess Bourke, Ria Waugh | back: Gavin Waugh, Richard Longe, Greg Longe, Paul Longe; front: Gavin Longe, Paul Longe, Chris Longe | Dinner hosted by Robyn & Richard at Dros Restaurant, Stellenbosch
5: Gregory Bourke (Jess's Brother), Greg Longe, Gareth Schenck (Best Man), and Joey Donaldson
6: St. Mary's on the Braak Church, Stellenbosch
8: The Reception was held at the beautiful Neethlingshof Wine Estate
12: Neethlingshof Winery | We had the pleasure of having our niece Mandy accompany us on our first day of wine tasting in Stellenbosch. We had many laughs and a great day together. | Rust En Vrede Winery
13: Blaauwklippen Vineyards founded in 1682 is one of South Africa’s oldest wine estates. Favorite Wine: 2009 Noble Late Harvest Malbec
14: Ernie Els Wine Estate - The golfer Ernie Els is better known for his woods than his corks, but he has a beautiful, modern winery with fantastic views and great tasting wines. Favorite Wine: 2008 Proprietor's Blend (60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Shiraz, 6% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 5% Malbec, 5% Petit Verdot)
15: After sampling wines at Zevenwacht 's Tasting Romm, we had a delicious dinner at the turn of the 19th Century Cape Dutch Manor House. Favorite Wine: 2009 Pinotage (a uniquely South African grape variety)
16: After staying in Stellenbosch for a few days before and after the wedding, we relocated to Franschhoek, a picturesque village nestled between towering mountains in the beautiful Cape winelands. Spectacular vineyards cover these mountain slopes settled more than 300 years ago by the Huguenots, who brought with them their age-old French wine and food culture. | The clouds, always in motion, literally pour over and down the sides of these mountains. | Franschhoek Dutch Reformed Church, circa 1847
17: Built in 1938 the Huguenot Monument commemorates the 250th anniversary of the settlement of Huguenots at the Cape. | Huguenot Memorial Museum | The figure of the woman, with the Bible in her right hand and a broken chain in her left, symbolizes freedom of religion. She casts off the cloak of oppression and stands above the earth in spiritual freedom gazing upwards towards a future full of optimism and hope.
18: Nederburg Winery, established in 1791, is one of the most widely known South African Wineries. Favorite Wines: 2010 Special Late Harvest 2010 Stein (Chenin Blanc)
20: Fairview Wine and Cheese Farm is home to the trademark goat’s tower that has become Fairview’s symbol, and which in time led to the cleverly named Goats du Roam wine. Favorite Wines: 2006 Spice Route Malabar 2008 Spice Route Mourvedre
22: Tokara Wine Estate and Olive Farm offer magnificent vistas over the Simonsberg Mountains and as far as False Bay and Table Mountain. Favorite Wine: 2009 Sauvignon Blanc Noble Late Harvest | "Tokara Vines" - a metal sculpture of grape vines. Upon closer inspection the “crowns” of the vines are covered in words, which represent various stories relating to the wine estate and its history.
24: Thelema - a former fruit orchard turned wine farm with lovely views to the Drakenstein Mountains. Favorite Wine: Sutherland 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon - Petit Verdot
26: The 326-year old Boschendal Estate is one of most dramatic of all the Cape wineries. Set below the tall peaks of the Groot Drakenstein, its attractive Cape Dutch manor house is reached via a sweeping drive lined with ancient trees. Favorite wine: 2010 Le Bouquet (a blend of Mario Muscat, Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc)
28: La Motte Winery
29: Mont Rochelle Winery
30: The founder of Graff Diamonds owns the ultra high-end Delaire Graff Estate. Having recently completed a multi-million Rand renovation, the stunning views and landscaping are rivaled only by the fabulous art collection.
32: Vergelegen has been consistently voted as South Africa's most beautiful winery and we would have to agree. The tranquility of the extensive gardens and historically preserved thatched roofed homestead make this a wonderful place to explore.
33: The 300-year old Camphor trees were proclaimed as a national monument in 1942.
34: A final dinner out with Hazel, Richard and Robyn | Following our time in the Cape Winelands we spent 6 nights on safari in Botswana with Gavin's sister Robyn and her husband Richard. We then continued on to Victoria Falls alone before returning to Johannesburg to stay with Robyn & Richard in their home for one final night prior to our flight back to the USA. Gavin's mother, Hazel flew up to Johannesburg to join Robyn & Richard in seeing us off. | Robyn & Richard's home located on the 10th tee of Centurion Golf Estate
35: The 18-hour flight home in the comfort of Business Class - well worth the extra miles to upgrade!!!