Spice Route: The 14 Best Things To Do at this Paarl Estate

Spice Route: The 14 Best Things To Do at this Paarl Estate

For a memorable day in the Cape Winelands – complete with gourmet food, artisanal wine, art, shopping and more – make the Spice Route in Paarl your one-stop destination.

A mere 45-minute drive from Cape Town’s city centre, Spice Route Destination is a delightful farm village in Paarl, where three fabulous restaurants and a variety of local wine, beer, gin and chocolate tastings await. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg; there is an outdoor kids’ play area with exciting customised items and a pump track, a coffee shop with homemade ice cream, an interiors and gift shop, a deli and even a glass-blowing and ceramic studio. If there ever was a perfect day-trip to the Winelands for the entire family, Spice Route would be it!

1. Spice Route Passport

Spice Route Tasting Passport

Taste your way through Spice Route Destination with a Tasting Passport – a pocket-sized booklet that gives you access to five standard tastings (valid for one year from date of purchase). The tasting experiences include a Swartland Wine Journey from Spice Route Wines, CBC Craft Beer, De Villiers Chocolate & Confectionery, Jowls Charcuterie (next door to Spice Route Wines wine-tasting area), and Wilderer Distillery Spirits, each of which can be used at your leisure throughout the year. For R210, it makes for a wonderful gift for foodie friends.
Please note Tasting reservations are required for 10 or more people.
Cost R210
Contact 021 863 5200, info@spiceroute.co.za

2. Jewells

Jewells: The Best Things To Do at Spice Route in Paarl

This open-kitchen farm-to-table eatery is co-owned by three of South Africa’s top chefs: Liam Tomlin (of Chefs Warehouse and Thali fame), charcuterie whizz Neil Jewell and baker extraordinaire Tina Jewell. As you’d expect – only the best ingredients go into producing the seasonal dishes: vegetables and herbs from Spice Route’s surrounding farmland and organic Red Angus beef from Charles Back’s herd. The experimental winelist comprises a Spice Route Wines selection, including a new range of natural wines, Obscura, produced in clay vats from Georgia (in Europe, one of the world’s oldest wine-producing regions). Add warm service and spectacular views, and the restaurant is certainly living up to its name.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 12pm – 4pm
Friday – Sunday, 6pm – 8pm
Contact 021 204 4875, jewellspiceroute@gmail.com
BOOK through DINEPLAN

3. La Grapperia

La Grappaeria: Things To Do at Spice Route

Enjoy a selection of wood-fired, thin-based pizzas and a variety of other family-friendly food options at this casual German and Italian eatery, while enjoying a glass or two of Wilderer Distillery’s award-winning gin and tonic. While relaxing under the trees, with the little ones playing in the nearby playground, why not linger a bit longer and watch the sky turn a few shades of pink as the sun dips behind the mountain – a Cape Town bucket list item indeed.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 11.30am – 10.30pm
Contact 021 863 4367, grapperia@wilderer.co.za
Book Now

4. Barley & Biltong Emporium

Barley & Biltong: The Best Things To Do at Spice Route in Paarl

This beer garden has arguably one of the best views in the Paarl Winelands, with outdoor seating at long wooden tables and benches (ideal for large groups). Indoors, there’s a long wooden bar counter under a reed ceiling, with several TV screens strategically placed for big-match days. The restaurant serves a mean burger – thick juicy patties with mature cheddar and homemade tomato sauce served on a sesame bun with homemade chips. Specials and light lunch options are chalked up on the blackboard daily. It’s the perfect place to while away a few hours while enjoying an ice-cold CBC (Cape Brewing Company) pint, accompanied by your choice of biltong.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm
Contact 021 863 5200, info@barleyandbiltong.co.za
BOOK THROUGH DINEPLAN

5. Wilderer Distillery

Wilderer Distillery: Spice Route

Building on the legacy of master distiller Helmut Wilderer, whose award-winning grappa and eau de vie (schnapps) paved the way, this lovely distillery still produces world-class spirits. In the safe hands of his son Christian Wilderer, the distillery caters for pop-ins as well as tastings at R30. Look out for Cape Healing Herb Bitter, a gold-medal-winning, naturally produced local liqueur using over 30 fynbos herbs including buchu, betulina, rooibos, devil’s claw and African wormwood.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 6pm
Contact 021 863 4367, grapperia@wilderer.co.za
Book Now

6. Hero Adventure Trail

Hero Adventure Trail: Things To Do at Spice Route

Known for creating some of the best adventure trails in the country, the Hero Adventure Trail brings 50km of track to Spice Route Destination. Located on the southern slopes of the Paarl Mountain, the trails boasts views of vineyards, olive orchards, citrus plantations, and more. Ideal for keen mountain-bikers, runners, hikers and explorers.
Please note In order to use the trails you must register and purchase a day pass at the Hero Trail Centre or Information Centre at Spice Route.
Opening times Monday – Sunday;
Summer (September – May), sunrise – sunset
Winter (June – August), 7am – 5.30pm
Contact 083 384 2976, info@hero-adventure.co.za

7. DV Café

DV Chocolate Cafe: Spice Route

For a delicious sweet treat and a cup of the good stuff, head to this coffee shop for a freshly roasted cup of coffee, a tempting array of gluten-free cakes (made with De Villiers Chocolate), and home-made ice cream.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 9am – 5pm
Contact 021 874 1060, tastingroom@dvchocolate.com

8. Spice Route Wine-Tasting Area

Spice Route Tasting Room

As its name implies, Spice Route Wines recalls the ancient mariners of the 15th century who braved the Cape of Storms in search of exotic spices. Charles Back, who owns the highly successful Fairview Estate just 800 metres up the road, opened the winery in 1997, which was considered to be a bold move at the time. Today, however, his bold spirit seems to have paid off, with the new destination attracting flocks of locals and out-of-towners.
When it comes to wine-tasting, there are four options: Malabar Tasting (R40), Swartland Wine Journey (R50), Winemaker’s Journey (R75) and Wine and Charcuterie Journey (R80). If it’s chilly outside, head to the cosy underground tasting room, but if it’s a beautiful day, enjoy your wine under the pergola, or on the expansive lawns, where newly planted plane trees and umbrellas provide shade.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 9am – 5pm
Contact 021 863 5200, tasting@spiceroute.co.za
Book Now

9. The Cape Brewing Company

Cape Brewing Company: Spice Route

Opened in December 2012, the Cape Brewery Company (CBC) produces a wide range of craft beers – under the watchful eye of skilled brewmaster Wolfgang Koedel – who insists on using only the finest ingredients and state-of-the-art equipment. Aficionados can view the facilities, watch the entire production process and taste it immediately after – either on tap or at the tasting stations. There are four core brews: pilsner, lager, Krystal Weiss and Amber Weiss made using crystal-clear water from a nearby spring in the Paarl mountain, which gives the beer its unique flavour. Choose between tasting four beers (R50) or seven (R75) before you decide which (and how many) crates to take home with you! Check out all CBC Beer Tasting details here.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm (last tasting at 4.30pm)
Contact 021 863 2270, info@capebrewing.co.za
Book Now

10. De Villiers Chocolate

DV Chocolate Studio: Things To Do at Spice Route

There’s more to chocolate than meets the eye at De Villiers Artisan Chocolate – one of the few bean-to-bar micro-chocolatiers in the world. The factory and shop are situated in a charming historic building on the farm where chocolates are hand-crafted from cocoa beans sourced from all corners of the globe. The shop also sells medium-roast Arabica coffee beans and drinking chocolate. Daily tastings are available and you can choose between a simple chocolate and confectionary tasting (R30) or a tutored explanation of all five single-origin dark chocolates, including a sampling of the delicately roasted cocoa beans, and an insight into the bean-to-bar process (R35, booking required).
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 9am – 5pm
Contact 021 874 1060, info@dvchocolate.com
Book Now

11. The Trading Company

Trading Company: Spice Route

No visit to Spice Route Destination would be complete without popping into Abigail Bisogno’s gorgeous Trading Company. A former retail director at Foschini, Abby (the sister of Charles Back and co-owner of Spice Route) has created a shop filled with exciting treasures – from handmade, limited-edition pieces by well-known local artists to bespoke homeware, exotic
cushions and table linen, jewellery, stationery, and much, much more. Most of the products are made from natural materials and all the décor in the store has been handmade locally or spruced up by local craftsmen. With its mix of old and new, it’s a quirky treasure trove where you’re sure to find the ideal gift for anyone and everyone you know. Tourists can pick up all the gifts they need to take home to loved ones in this one-stop shop.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm.
Contact 021 201 6917, contacttradingco@gmail.com

12. Brenda’s Deli

Brendas Deli: Spice Route

Foodie extraordinaire Brenda de Jager has turned her passion for all things edible into a business that makes preservative- and additive-free jams, preserves, pickles and glazes. Find her deli at the entrance of Spice Route and stock up on one of her fragrant jams, the perfect accompaniment to a slice of buttery toast or a fluffy scone.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm
Contact 021 863 3392, info@brendas.co.za

13. Collect – Anthony Shapiro

Collect Ceramic Studio: The Best Things To Do at Spice Route in Paarl

Collect is one of the Destination’s newest aesthetic treasures, home to Anthony Shapiro’s exquisite ceramics. Well-known for his popular ANT bowls, Anthony has been making pots since he was 13, teaching ceramics along the way. Situated next to The Red Hot Glass Studio, Collect is filled with high-quality ceramics by Anthony as well as other artists.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm
Contact 082 853 0988, anthony@anthonyshapiro.co.za

14. Red Hot Glass

Spice Route Paarl Red Hot Glass

Situated next door to Liam Tomlin and Neil Jewell’s restaurant is one of the few Venetian-style glass-blowing studios in the country. The glass pieces in the gallery are exquisite – from hand-blown perfume bottles to interior artefacts, lighting and abstract sculptural artworks. From the gallery you can watch the craftsmen going about the business of glass-blowing.
Opening times Monday – Thursday, 9am – 5pm
Friday, 9am – 4.30pm
Saturday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm
Contact 021 863 0330, info@redhotglass.co.za

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Disclaimer:

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: 18 February 2020