Everyone who visits the village of Stanford just a two-hour drive from Cape Town, South Africa, should arrive hungry. There are so many good places to eat and to enjoy wine tasting that the town is becoming a serious contender for foodie capital of the Cape; Franschhoek had better watch out. Here are 12 Stanford restaurants and wine farms worth visiting.
1. The Manor House
Open Thurs to Sat for breakfast, lunch and dinner, for dinner from 17:00 on Wed and for breakfast and lunch on Sundays
If you like good food that’s well cooked and served in a rustic farmhouse with views of the mountains, you have to visit Havercrofts. Highly recommended by locals for Sunday lunch, it’s owned and run ‘with heart and humour’ by husband and wife team, Innes and Brydon Havercroft – also known at the weekly Saturday morning market as the ‘good-looking husband and rude wife’. Brydon mostly busies himself in the kitchen while Innes takes the orders and entertains guests with her banter. A blackboard menu of treats might include items like duck liver parfait, mushroom risotto, kudu fillet, pork belly, blue cheese pannacotta, churros or lemon tart.
Open for lunch Thurs to Sun 12.30-2:00
Open Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun 12:00-17:00, Thurs 12:00-21:30
4. Springfontein Eats
Open Wed 18:00-22:30, Thurs to Sat 12:30-15:30 and 18:00-22:30, Sun 12:30-15:30
5. Graze Slow Food Café
Open Wed 9:00-12:00pm, Fri 6pm-11pm, Sat 9:00-16:00
6. Mosaic Lagoon Cafe
Open Wed to Sun 11-5pm (except if there’s a private function)
7. Ou Meul Bakkery
You can see the farm stall underpinnings of the lovely Ou Meul Bakkery, which still offers puff pastry pies and tasty sourdough and other breads but it offers a full breakfast and lunch menu too. Sit down or take away if you’re in a rush. I had a good flat white (they use Bootlegger coffee) but next time I’ll ask for a double shot for extra kick. My roast vegetable open sandwich with beetroot hummus on toasted sourdough had me smacking my lips in appreciation, and my husband enjoyed his bacon and avo sandwich on ciabatta.
Open daily from 7:00-17:00
8. Yum Eat Café
Open Wed to Sun 9:00-16:00
Stanford wine farms
9. Stanford Hills
Open for tastings daily from 8:30-17:00
Zimbabwean winemaker Tariro Masayiti is a biochemist who later studied winemaking at Stellenbosch and worked at Nederburg before coming to the Springfontein boutique winery. Visit the winery to taste their estate wines, or buy a glass or two at the sunset market that takes place in the village square on the last Friday of the month. The main varietals produced at Springfontein are the South African staples of chenin blanc and pinotage, and since 2019 all their products have been certified organic. There’s also a restaurant (see 4 above) and accommodation on the estate.
Open for tastings daily from 11:00-21:00
Open Mon to Fri 9:00-17:00, Sat/public holidays 10:00-15.00
12. Creation Wines
Open for tastings daily (except Christmas and New Year’s Day) from 10:00-17:00, booking essential
Other wine farms
Other Stanford wine farms include Walker Bay next to the Birkenhead Brewery, Sir Robert Stanford Estate, Boschrivier and Brunia (both known for their shiraz), and Vaalvlei (also known for fly-fishing and owner/winemaker Naas Terblanche’s passion for the conservation of frogs and toads).
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