Nestled in the Riebeek Valley among vineyards and olive groves, Riebeek-Kasteel is a haven for artists and those who love a taste of the good life.
BEANS ABOUT COFFEE:
Located on the town square, here you will taste coffee that would still be growing if it was any fresher. Roasted and blended to order by owner Thomas Jamneck, the house blend called Sidewalk is rich and robust. Enjoy with the decadent baked cheesecake and berry coulis or opt for the house speciality of a quirky bacon and egg nest. They sell beans and ground coffee too, but a cup enjoyed watching the world of Riebeek-Kasteel go by, seated on cushions made from hessian coffee bags, is essential. Call 082 901 2113 or visit www.beansaboutcoffee.co.za.
WICKED TREATS BAKERY:
A miniature purple shop near the square, everything sold at Wicked Treats is just a little different. Lipsmacking soya mince samoosas and miniature ‘laundry bag’ pies of curried veg, ‘wicked chocolate cupcakes’ dripping in chocolate with a marshmallow in the middle, and tiny bite-size ‘chocolate and shiraz’ biscuits are just some of the options.
Owners Tony and Liesel Purnell used to sell from home, where patrons helped themselves and left the money on the kitchen table. Now the general public can have their wicked treats too – seven days a week – because life is just too short to eat carrot sticks. Call 022-448-1419 or 082 374 1363 or visit www.wickedtreats.co.za.
From dolmades and pickled aubergine to spices by weight, meats, cheeses, oils and ethical eggs, Crisp is an Alice in Wonderland experience for cooks and foodies – with products from all over the Mediterranean and Middle East. Goods
are all packed in brown paper bags and the shop exudes a ‘tread lightly on the earth’ motto. Try the sumac and smoked paprika. Call 022-448-1777.
All the most comforting homemade products imaginable are for sale here, including venison pies and date balls. Handwork from local suppliers also features prominently, so whatever you buy will be uniquely ‘Riebeek Valley’. Situated on the left-hand side as you enter town down the main street, you won’t miss Aitsa’s happy red shopfront. Here live all things local and lovely. Call 022-448-1492.
THE PASTORIE ON KLOOVENBURG:
Kloovenburg is renowned the world over for its fine wines and inspired olive products – from olive fig jam to olive shower gel. Enjoying a view over the heart of the town, the estate is also home to some of the valley’s most luxurious overnight accommodation – The Pastorie. This meticulously renovated original farmhouse offers en-suite accommodation in opulent style. Take in a wine and olive tasting on the magnificent estate, and stock up with delicious products to enjoy at home. Call 022-448-1635 or visit www.kloovenburg.com.
The very best local talent is displayed in this light and sunny space in the main street of the village. Painters, ceramicists and sculptors have populated the gallery with unique offerings, many inspired by the area’s beauty. Every piece here is handpicked for display by owner Astrid McLeod. When you step inside, you too will be inspired by the artists’ creativity and prowess. Call 083 653 3697 or visit www.galleryriebeek.co.za.
Old-world clothing, shoes and accessories with a modern, whimsical twist; crocheted garments, shoes wrapped in florals and handmade jewellery… stepping into Ancient Spirit is like being in a walk-in wardrobe of treasures. Everything sold here is extra special and staff will help you to find a perfect fit. Even their music is delicate and evocative. Call 022-448-1777.
THE OLIVE FESTIVAL
Taking place over the first weekend of May (5 and 6), the Riebeek Valley Olive Festival draws thousands of
visitors. Most accommodation is offered at B&Bs and guest houses so demand is very high. Here are some suggestions: The Riebeek Valley Hotel, 022-461-2672; Kasteelberg Country Inn, 022-448-1110; Bartholomeus Klip Farmhouse, 022-448-1087. Alternatively, call the Tourism Office on 022-448-1545 or email [email protected].
KERI HARVEY, BRUCE TUCK and VANESSA LEWIS