Nestled at the foot of the east-facing slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain, Plaisir Wine Estate sits between Paarl and Franschhoek. Covering an expansive 974 hectares, with 400 hectares dedicated to vineyards, it is also one of the largest wine farms in the Western Cape. Plaisir was our third stop on the Navy Line of the Franschhoek tram tour. This historical Estate promises relaxation, good company, and, of course, fantastic wine.
A brief history of Plaisir
Plaisir Wine Estate unfolds a rich 400-year winemaking history. Seeking refuge from religious persecution, Charles Marais and his family sailed to the Cape in 1687. In 1693, Cape Governor Simon van der Stel granted them land. They named the land after their hometown, Le Plessis Marly. The Manor House was Constructed in 1764 by Charles’s grandson, Jacob Marais. Today, it stands proudly as one of the earliest and finest examples of Cape Dutch architecture. The mid-18th century marked a period of prosperity, guided by Jacob and his wife, Maria Boeiens. In the transformative year of 1764, the vineyards proudly hosted 35,000 vines, and the cellar stored 28 leaguers of wine. And so, as they say, the rest became a cherished chapter in the estate’s storied history.
A tasting experience at Plaisir Wine Estate
The Plasir de Merle collection features a range of wines, including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot. Additionally, there are special release wines such as Shiraz and Grand Plasir, which are exclusively available in limited quantities from the cellar.
At Plaisir, you can enjoy their best wines, delicious food pairings, and platters in a stunning setting surrounded by lush lawns, ancient oak trees, and the impressive Simonsberg Mountain. Plaisir’s tasting room, housed in a historic barn constructed in 1823, is another great place to enjoy everything on offer. We really liked the flagship tasting, which featured the Grand Plaisir, Cabernet Franc, and Shiraz.
A logo representing strength and power
The estate is filled with symbolic elements that narrate the tale of skill, adversity, family, and resilience. Take a look at Plaisir’s logo, which is of a griffin or gryphon. This magnificent creature, a blend of a lion and an eagle, holds a dual title as the king among both beasts and birds. Admiring its keen eagle vision and the strength and courage of a lion, people revere the Gryphon as a guardian of treasures.
As we said goodbye to this gorgeous Estate, it was clear to us that Plaisir is more than just good wine. With each sip, you’re not just tasting wine; you’re also savoring centuries of dedication and craftsmanship. So, here’s to Plaisir Wine Estate – a place where time-honored tales meet the present
Discover more wine estates in and around Franschhoek by clicking the link below.