Ernie Els Wines: View-Drenched Wine-Tasting + Dining in Stellenbosch

Ernie Els Wines: View-Drenched Wine-Tasting + Dining in Stellenbosch

Grandstand views and full-on flavours in prime Stellenbosch terroir.

Winding up and up the single-track road towards Ernie Els Wines, dipping through a mountain kloof past indigenous gardens and vines, you emerge on top of the world, with panoramic views towards Table Mountain, False Bay and Stellenbosch. The renowned South African golfer’s nickname, Big Easy, pretty much sums up the vibe at the Stellenbosch winery named after him… big skies, big views, big wines and easy hospitality, with an elevated level of unobtrusive comfort that really does set you at your ease.

Ernie Els Setting

The winery is perched high on the slopes of the Helderberg mountains, its vines clustered around it in 45 hectares of mostly north-facing blocks. It’s prime cabernet sauvignon country, what is known as Stellenbosch’s Golden Triangle, ideal for the big-hearted wines that Ernie Els put his name to.

Cabernet and cellar tours

Ernie Els Wine Cellar

“Cabernet sauvignon is the golden thread that runs through our wine,” says winemaker Louis Strydom, who has steered the winery from the maiden vintage in 2000 to today. “It’s about showcasing the different personalities of cabernet sauvignon. We have 10 different clones on the farm which we vinify separately.” On a tour through the brick-vaulted cellar, he describes different fermentation and maturation techniques, showing us terracotta amphorae next to French oak barrels and concrete eggs, each of which play a different role in creating the complex cabernet sauvignons and blends that make up the Proprietor’s, Major, and Big Easy ranges.

Wine-tasting on the terrace

Ernie Els Restaurant

An ease-filled tasting lounge and long, view-drenched terrace lure you to settle in for an afternoon of wine-tasting. There’s even a chipping green above the vines (a hole-in-one gets you a free bottle of wine). Wander through to the trophy room crammed with Ernie memorabilia, photos and awards. Or follow your oenophile antennae into the bottle-lined vinothéque, a treasure trove of aged-to-perfection older vintages ready to adorn your lunch table.

Ernie Els Dining

A restaurant with a view

The restaurant channels modern farmhouse simplicity de luxe. With high-beamed ceilings, silky wooden tables and comfortable chairs looking out over the views (or outdoor tables on the terrace or courtyard in summer), it’s a place to linger for lazy lunches, your chosen bottle accompanying a dish or three from the seasonal menu. Unfussy and generous plates of food, from Bovelder steaks to West Coast linefish, heirloom tomato gazpacho, or slow-cooked pork belly, these are comforting flavours seasoned with a pinch of panache that suit the wines to a tee.

Ernie Els Grill

Good to know On summer weekends catch the wood-fired grillworks in action on the restaurant terrace for sizzling smoky flavours and all the views.
Big flavours, full-bodied wines, and views to feed the soul are par for the course.
Opening times Wine-tasting: Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm (Last Tasting Served At 4.00pm)
Lunch: Wednesday – Sunday, 12pm – 3.30pm
Dinner (November – April): Thursday – Saturday, 6pm – 9.30pm
Contact 021 881 3588,
Where to find it Annandale Road, Stellenbosch
Book through DinePlan

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The Inside Guide has made every effort to ensure that the information in this post was correct at the time of publication. However, we do not assume any liability caused by errors, such as price, cost, time, and location.

Time of publication: 27 March 2024

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