African Pride Mount Grace Country House and Spa in the Magaliesberg was the venue for Warwick Winery’s wine pairing evening last Saturday night, and I was invited to enjoy fine dining – and some iconic wines.
Mount Grace is the ultimate couples getaway retreat – and no stay over is complete without a visit to their spa.
Surrounded by bush and mountains, gently flowing streams and tranquil lawns, we spent an afternoon lounging at the rim flow pool, on our backs in the flotation room pool’s warm, salty water, and surrounded by nature in the garden Jacuzzi.
Our luxury room had a balcony that looked over the valley as far as the eye could see, where we toasted the sunset as birds of prey circled in the sky.
The bathrooms at Mount Grace are sublime: his and hers basins flank a tub to soak in for a loooong time, and rain shower heads offer showers to write about too.
A final note about the room: capsule coffee machines are a must in all decent hotels these days – and so is unlimited wi-fi (Mount Grace provides both).
Our driver collected us for dinner – our room was near the spa, but a drive away from the hotel restaurant the Rambling Vine, where the wine pairing was happening – so golf carts transport guests to the dining and main reception areas.
Stellenbosch’s Warwick Estate, the family owned and run winery, offered diners a selection of their finest to complement the menu
We began with a welcome glass of crisp First Lady Dry rosé, (one of the SA varieties with the lowest sugar content in the market).
To accompany our starter of asparagus and goat’s cheese, we moved on to First Lady Sauvignon Blanc, one of Warwick’s celebrated whites, a light and delicate fruity wine perfect for picnics and long, lazy lunches.
Then it was time for their iconic Three Cape Ladies (recently immortalised in popular fiction, featured as the seduction wine in the latest James Bond novel Carte Blanche), and Warwick’s elegant Trilogy (Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon) – an iconic Bordeaux-style blend that has become one of the flagships of the South African Wine Industry.
My husband enjoyed the reds with his ostrich fillet while I opted for the pan-fried salmon
Passion fruit parfait and chiffon cake rounded off an evening of fine dining and guests were encouraged to linger in the dining room over coffee – or more wine.
We lingered for so long – the wines were THAT good, that the waiters eventually left a bottle of Trilogy on our table, and we chatted to the other journalists until the restaurant closed.
Breakfast at Mount Grace is a decadent, sumptuous affair
Sparkling wine, a pancake corner, thick, crispy Belgian waffles, salmon and capers (salmon on the breakfast display is another yardstick of a good hotel, in my opinion) and a hot selection that had guests queuing for more, all encouraged a vibey atmosphere in a venue that was full of families and couples enjoying the Heritage long weekend.
Our weekend in the Magaliesberg – complete with legendary (and luxurious) Mount Grace hospitality, Warwick wines and fresh country air was a relaxing (and pampering) way to spend a long weekend in South Africa – and it’s only an hour from Joburg.
For more info on Warwick wines go to http://www.warwickwine.com
For African Pride Mount Grace Country House and Spa inquiries and bookings click here.
Brought to you by All4Women