| “For over 30 years the Griers of Villiera have been unlocking the marvels of nature to create the distinctive wines and sparkling wines that bear the family name”
1.Bubbly and Nougat. Most wineries offer pairing options nowadays as a further incentive to get people to visit and to also see how food and wine can be so right for each other. The nougat and MCC pairing at Villiera costs R70 and is incredibly yummy. Their MCCs are not sweet so it’s not an overload on the senses, instead, because of the dryness of each bubbly, it helps to accentuate the fruit and nut components of the nougat and vice versa.
They are also not stingy on the bubbly pourings and I haven’t met anyone who hasn’t, after the pairing, bought a bottle or two so they can do the pairing again at home.
It’s a great idea for a girly day out or for impressing the mother-in-law.
2. MCC. They currently produce 5 sparkling wines and each one of them has a special place in my heart. I’m particularly besotted with the Monro 2009 (rich, meaty, ripe and oh so full) and their best seller, the Tradition Brut NV, which is dry but lively and perfect for all times of the day.
For those of you who are after something a little lighter, they have a beautifully labelled MCC called Starlight which is low in alcohol but still delicious.
3. Sustainability. Villiera has an amazing outlook on winery practices, for them, it’s not about making great wines and MCCs but about giving back to both the earth and the community- In 2010 Villiera Wines installed solar power and the farm has not sprayed insecticides for the past thirteen years. Water conservation, recycling and maintaining a healthy eco system on the farm is key as well as social responsibility which is why you will find them partaking and managing a number of social upliftment projects such as:
– Daycare Centre: Two trained pre-primary teachers are in charge of an early childhood development program on the farm taking care of +30 children of Villiera farm workers (expert supervision and training is provided by the Pebbles Project).
– There is an Environmental Centre on the Wildlife Sanctuary for training children and adults on environmental awareness.
– In 2013 the OWETHU clinic (an initiative of the CIPLA foundation) was launched at Villiera Wines by David Grier. OWETHU means “Ours” and the aim is to provide easy to access primary healthcare for the families of those employed by Villiera and all the surrounding farms where crèches and after-schools are run by The Pebbles Project (who will also be responsible for running the Clinic).
4. Game Drives. You don’t need to go to the Kruger to see some of South Africa’s wild animals but rather take a drive through 220 hectares on a two hour journey and see Springbuck, Kudu, Giraffe, Bontebok, Eland, Gemsbok, Black Wildebeest, Bush Pig, Burchell’s Zebra, common Duiker, Steenbuck and Grysbok. They even offer these drives at sunset, how romantic.
5. Tasting Room staff. Yes, they get a dedicated mention because I strongly believe that service can make or break a wine experience and at Villiera, you will be treated like royalty and have your wine poured generously and each bottled explained perfectly. Nothing sounds rehearsed and no question goes unanswered. It really is a joy to visit the tasting room and with them being only 15minutes away, I’m there quite often.
For more information, and to plan your visit, check out their website