Tag Archives: mountain biking

Restaurant Review: The doors of Open Door at Constantia Uitsig (almost) always open!

Open Door Kitchen and Bar Whale CottageYesterday was only the second day of Open Door being open on Constantia Uitsig, but it felt as if it had always been there, with everything running smoothly.  Open Door is the third restaurant of co-owners Neil Grant and Barry Engelbrecht, alongside Burrata and Bocca, and serves country fare.

Previously the home to The River Café on the wine estate, with a tasting room on the side which has moved across the driveway, the space of Open Door is large, being able to seat 250 patrons at full capacity, in different sections. One enters around the corner, and no longer at the former tasting room entrance. The main restaurant room is spacious, with a gas fireplace to come at the one end, and an open kitchen on the other end, with the bar close to the kitchen section, opposite of which is Neil’s precious wine collection, looking smaller than that of Burrata, but is not, Continue reading →

ABSA Cape Epic 2014: an epic battle of scenic cycle challenges!

Cape Epic 2014Today the 11th ABSA Cape Epic gets off the ground, the world’s ‘premier mountain biking challenge’, according to the Weekend Argus. A total of 1200 riders will participate in the tough 718 km race, described on its Twitter Bio as ‘The Untamed African Mountain Bike Race’, covering a unique route each year.  It receives extensive local and international media coverage, attracting attention to the rugged beauty of the Winelands.

Cape Epic organiser Kevin Vermaak had the vision to create a cycle challenge from Knysna to Cape Town over eight days, beginning with 200 riders in 2004.   Today the race starts at Meerendal wine estate in Durbanville, and the journey takes the riders through Arabella Wines in Robertson, The Oaks in Greyton, Oak Valley wine estate in Elgin, and finishes off on 30 March at Lourensford  wine estate in Somerset West.   A tent village is set up for the riders at the end of each day.

The race has a total prize value of R1,7 million, and the prize for the fastest woman rider has been increased to R690000.  Famous participants today are Formula 1 world champion Alain Prost; former Springbok rugby captain John Smit and former Springboks Continue reading →

Wines2Whales race with a view

A brand new endurance mountain bicycle race has been launched, taking cyclists through wine estates and scenic landscapes never accessed by cyclists before, reports the Cape Argus.

The Wines2Whales MTB Race starts on Friday 13 November, and runs over three days.  It starts at Lourensford wine estate in Somerset West,  and travels through Sir Lowry’s Pass, Elgin, Houw Hoek, Bot River, the Hemel & Aarde valley, finishing in Hermanus, from which they can see the whales.  

The route passes through 13 wine estates and 26 private farms.   Some of the unique farms and areas through which the 262 cyclists will travel on the 262 km route are Morgenster, Wederwill Game Reserve, the Houwhoek Inn, Lebanon, Paul Cluver estate, Oak Valley, Karwyderskraal, Beaumont Winery, Wildekrans, Hamilton Russell estate, and ending at the Hermanuspietersfontein winery.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio : www.whalecottage.com