The title for today’s post was inspired by a friend asking me on Facebook whether Creation Wines was a Christian farm, due to the name (she was being facetious!). Well, I wouldn’t know about that, but it did make me think and what I do know is that drinking and enjoying wine is close to a religion for me and I never pass up the opportunity to try out new wine related experiences like this one.
When I first heard about Creation Wines and started researching it I couldn’t help but notice the astonishing amount of glowing reviews and positive press surrounding their wine tasting and food pairings, so I immediately added it to my to-do list. Yesterday we trekked out to the Hemel en Aarde Vallei (directly translated as ‘Heaven and Earth Valley’) to go and see what the hype is all about.
Driving up to Creation Wines the first thing you’ll notice is the incredible views, and the second thing you’ll notice is the incredible amount of cars parked all the way along the vinyards; this gives you some idea of how busy and popular the place is. Fortunately we booked (as strongly advised on their excellent website) so we had no issues getting a table, but any walk-ins would probably have struggled to get a table. Creation offers a variety of tasting options, ranging from Brunch Pairings, to Wine & Food Pairings to Non-Alcoholic and Kids Pairings (check out the options here so there really is something for everyone.
Having researched the tasting options online and after having another quick look at the menu we all opted for the Food and Wine Pairing, which includes 8 different wines with accompanying and matching canapés. There is also a Young Adults menu available which makes Creation very accessible to families with young children, and indeed there were quite a lot of families with kids. Service is very, very good, with the menu and specials explained within minutes of sitting down, as well as water and a drop of rosé poured very quickly and efficiently. The good service continued throughout our visit with our server always in attendance without being overbearing, and the history of the farm and wines being poured explained in just the right amount of detail.
I’m not going to go into a massive amount of detail on how good the wine and the food was as there are literally hundreds of reviews covering it, but suffice it to say the reviews aren’t wrong at all! The wine was amazing with the food pairings hitting the spot in most, if not all cases – and of course the cauliflower and gorgonzola soup is every bit as good as expected. The young member of our party had the Kids Pairing menu, though in reality I think he was probably a bit too old for it (12yo) as well as the chicken schnitzel. We ended up finishing his marshmallows and banana chips for him! The Food & Wine Pairing is amazing value at R145 and is supposed to take 35-60 minutes but between some extra tastings thrown in and having a great time we were probably there about an hour and a half, and our glasses were never empty! Time passed very quickly and enjoyably with all of us having different favourites amongst the wines we tasted. The personal touch of owner Carolyn Martin working the shop floor makes a massive difference and this is how a restaurant/tasting venue should operate; quickly, efficiently and without a fuss.
I would strongly recommend anyone to visit Creation Wines and try one of their excellent value for money tastings or make a day of visiting the Hemel en Aarde Vallei as there are quite a few exceptional wine farms and eateries to explore. Creation Wines is part of the Hermanus Wine Route that is increasingly popular with locals as well as tourists who want to experience something a bit off the beaten track. We drove in from Caledon rather than Hermanus and the dry grain fields of Caledon makes for an interesting contrast with the lush vegetation of the Hemel en Aarde Vallei. I didn’t take that many pictures, or even any great pictures yesterday despite the fact that it is almost impossible not to with the beauty surrounding you – I think I was too busy having a religious experience at Creation Wines!