Worcester & Breede River Wine Tours
Worcester is a beautiful place and the largest town in the Breede River Valley area. Home to many wine farms that produce about 20 % of the country’s wine exports, it was founded in 1820 when two farms merged and named after the Marquis of Worcester, the brother of Lord Charles Somerset (the town of Somerset West is named after him). This area stretches to the stunning Hex River Valley and includes the quaint town of Rawsonville. It is only an hour outside of Cape Town. If you want to tour the winelands here you can book in advance at the head office of the Worcester Winelands in Baring Street. For a huge selection of bottled wine from all over the region, stop in at the Boland-Agri Wine Shop.
This area has a Mediterranean climate with a fairly rainfall pattern in the surrounding areas. The temperatures here are more extreme than in Cape Town, because of the Slanghoek and Du Toit’s Kloof Mountain ranges that block the influence of the Oceans. In this climate, the Hanepoot grape thrives. This is also because this area is part of a rain shadow phenomenon which means that there is not much rain in Worcester itself. During winter, there may be snow on the mountains and temperatures can be below freezing.
The Best Wines
The dessert wine made from the Hanepoot grape is what this area is the most famous for having won many awards over the years. The production of red and white wine is becoming more popular as the techniques of over 250 years in the viticulture industry are being perfected. The wines that have won awards here are the Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Colombar, and Chardonnay, and of the red wines, the Pinotage and Cabernet are the best.