The Western Cape is known for the array of world-class wines that it produces from rolling vineyards that stretch through Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Paarl, Robertson and the Karoo. However, this area is also acclaimed for producing some of the finest cheese in the country and, arguably, the world. These dairy delights are the perfect complement to the variety of wines, rounding off any Cape Winelands experience to perfection.
The following Western Cape farms are just some that are acclaimed for their wide variety and world-class quality cheeses, and are all open to the public:
Anura (Klapmuts) – www.anura.co.za
With the Simonsberg Mountains towering overhead, Anura is a wine and cheese farm that is committed to the combination of quality and variety, regardless of their product. It is a family-owned and –run estate, purchased by the Boumas in 1989. Its cheeses include the Forest Hill Camembert, Forest Hill Brie, Anura Marisch (mozzarella/edam blend), Anura Mountain Cheese (a Swiss style cheese), Anura Camembert and Anura Brie.
Fairview (Paarl) – www.fairview.co.za
Fairview is made extra special because it combines cheeses made from cow’s milk and goat’s milk. These artisanal cheeses are widely available at all major retail outlets across South Africa. The range is extensive and inclusive, catering to different tastes and preferences. There is a resident herd of about 1 000 goats at Fairview. Goat’s milk is naturally lower in fat than cow’s milk, making it a healthier alternative that suits lactose intolerant cheese-lovers.
Lourensford Estate (Somerset West) – www.lourensford.co.za
With a history that dates back to the year 1700, Lourensford is known for its breathtaking beauty. Originally established for the purposes of winemaking (for which it is still renowned), this farm is now also the site of Healey’s Cheese. This is mature cheddar that is made using natural methods for the most delicious of flavours. No artificial colourants, flavourants or preservatives are used. Enjoying this cheese can be paired with a wine tasting for a very special taste experience.
Puglia Cheese (Stellenbosch) – www.zevenwacht.co.za/zw_cheese
With a passion for authentic Italian cheese, the owners of Puglia have succeeded in creating the country’s most genuinely mozzarella-ish mozzarella. In the age-old tradition, this mozzarella is patiently made by hand. Specialities include traditional mozzarella balls, stuffed mozzarella balls and stretched mozzarella.
Simonsberg Cheese (Stellenbosch) – www.simonsbergcheeselovers.com
Simonsberg cheeses are well known by discerning South African consumers. There is an array of varieties on offer, sure to include something for just about everyone. In addition to more traditional cheddars and Goudas, Simonsberg also produces brie, camembert, cream cheese, cottage cheese and more.