Set amidst beautiful hills and vineyards, Warwick Estate is a well-known spot for wine lovers in South Africa. Warwick isn’t just known for its amazing wines, though. It’s also a favorite place for visitors for its pretty views, lawn picnics, gourmet meals and vineyard safaris.
A picture perfect entrance
If you’ve come looking for a boutique, yet effortlessly beautiful estate in the winelands, Warwick is the top choice. Tall oak trees and a playing fountain frame the entrance, and a well-manicured green lawn extends to a pond. Add to this their lovely garden spaces and the overall effect is a pretty and serene Cape Dutch scene.
Warwick’s wine and the legacy of a remarkable woman
Warwick stepped into South Africa’s wine scene in 1964 when Stan and Norma Ratcliffe purchased the estate, focusing on cultivating classic Bordeaux varieties like Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. With dedication, Norma Ratcliffe became one of the Cape’s first female winemakers, leaving an enduring legacy reflected in the Warwick “First Lady” range. The inaugural Warwick-labeled wine, “La Femme Bleu” (now known as “Blue Lady”), was released in 1984. Two years later, in 1986, Warwick Trilogy, a Bordeaux-style blend, made its debut and has since gained recognition as an iconic wine featured on esteemed wine lists globally. Over the years, Warwick’s wines have earned numerous awards, solidifying the brand as an iconic presence in South African winemaking.
There are three dedicated areas for wine tastings – the indoor tasting room, the wooden deck and picnic benches.
The indoor tasting room is impressive with its simple but beautiful wine-themed decorations.
The weather was perfect on the day we visited, though, so we chose to sit on the wooden deck, overlooking the garden and pond.
Wine Tasting Options
When it comes to the wine tasting, there are three options to choose from:
- The First Lady Tasting: Warwick has a proud history of being home to South Africa’s first female winemaker, Norma Ratcliffe. To honor her accomplishments, Warwick introduced the wine range called ‘The First Lady.’ Wines in the range include the MCC, Rose, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinotage and Cabernet Sauvignon – R75pp
- The Premium Tasting: This range includes Sauvignon Blanc, Old Vine Chenin Blanc, Pitch Black, The Cape Ladies Blend and the Blue Lady Cabernet Sauvignon – R125
- Trilogy Vertical Tasting: Enjoy a vertical blind tasting of Warwick’s Flagship wine. Also, if you correctly match the vintage and pairing note you receive your tasting for free –R350
Please check with Warwick before visiting, as the tasting menu is subject to change. The pricing and range in this post are from April 2023.
I went for the Premium Tasting at Warwick Estate, and it was a great decision! I might not be a wine expert, but I have a straightforward view on wine – either I like it or I don’t. So, I have to mention that the Professor Black, the Blue Lady, and the Trilogy were my top three favorites from the tasting.
Looking for more things to do at Warwick Estate?
Warwick’s picnics are a hit, and it’s no surprise why. There are three dedicated areas for picnics: on the lawns, at picnic pods, or picnic benches. Another cool thing to do is the Vineyard Safaris – a special wine tour on an open-top vehicle through the vineyards with tastings included. Warwick is great for families too, with water features, a playground, and special picnic menus for kids. The Harvest Table is a multi-course menu with three flights of gourmet dishes. They also host events, parties, and team-building activities at their events venue. Just remember, you need to book these experiences at least 24 hours ahead.
Reservation and Contact Information for Warwick Estate
For reservations, visit their official website or contact Warwick Estate at the following details:
Warwick Estate is a nice and peaceful place with an interesting history. I like that they focus on red wine and have talented female winemakers. The service is great, and their wines are some of the best in the region. Whether you’re doing a wine tasting, touring the vineyard, or having a fancy meal, Warwick Estate gives you a special experience.
Explore more boutique wine estates in Stellenbosch by clicking on the image below.