Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category
South African wine industry has come a long way and recently some international wine critics were full of praise for the transformation of our wines to quality and premium wines.
The Rainbow nation is no stranger to transformation and similarly, its wine industry is an excellent case study on how to bring about a major change. This according to wine critic, Brian Elliot. He added that making large volumes of poor-quality wine was ditched once international help pointed out that South African winegrowing areas were especially suited to premium, rather than value, wines. This paved the way for more reds and for sophisticated and complex wines of any type – which are less price-sensitive.
This point of view is shared by Chief Wine critic of the New York Times ,Eric Asimov. He notes “The most surprising thing is the consistently good quality. South Africa today is teeming with good Chenin Blanc, wines of freshness and character, at prices that make them exceptional value.”
Brian Elliot also praises South African wine companies and indicated that “This skilled winemaking is also evident in large-scale operations like the company of wine peopleTM. From its Arniston Bay brand, through the Fairtrade Thandi wines to the rich and aromatic Kumkani range, the professionalism shines through. Kumkani’s top-of-the-range Sauvignon Blanc has vibrant flavours of flint and gooseberry reminiscent of Sancerre”.
Stand a chance to win double tickets to The Wine Show Jo’burg which will be held at The Coca Cola Dome from 4-6 June 2010.
If you want to win the tickets and you’re living area and able to attend, all you have to do is leave a comment on our Facebook page or upload a fan picture.
For more info about show, visit www.wineshow.co.za
South African sayings can sometimes be confusing to foreigners but it is actually very simple to understand and to use. Braai, Ag, Eina and lekker is just a few of the uniquely South Africans words.
Here are some useful South African words:
What is a braai? It is the first thing you will be invited to when you visit South Africa. A braai is a backyard barbecue and it will take place regardless of the weather. So you will have to go even if it’s raining like mad. At a braai you will be introduced to a substance known as mieliepap (a traditional porridge made from corn)
This is one of the most useful South African words. Pronounced like the “ach” in the German “achtung”, it can be used to start a reply when you are asked a tricky question, as in: “Ag, I don’t know.” Or a sense of resignation: “Ag OK, I’ll have some more mieliepap then.” It can stand alone too as a signal of irritation.
Widely used by all language groups, this word,derived from the Afrikaans, means “ouch.” Pronounced:“aynah”.
Often used at the end of a sentence to emphasize the importance of what has just been said, as in “You’re only going to be in trouble , if you come in late again, hey?” It can also stand alone as a question. Instead of saying “excuse me?” or “pardon me?” when
you have not heard something directed at you, you can always say: “Hey?”
This is another great word to use in conversations. Derived from the two words “is” and “it”, it can be used when you have nothing to contribute if someone
tells you something at a braai. For instance, if someone would say: “The Russians will succeed in their bid for capitalism once they adopt a work ethic and respect for private ownership.” It is quite appropriate to respond by saying: “Izit?”
An Afrikaans word meaning nice, this word is used by all language groups to express approval. If you enjoyed a braai thoroughly, you can say: “Now that was lekk-errrrrrr!” while drawing out the last syllable.
This is a universal South African greeting, and you will hear this word throughout the country. It is often accompanied with the word “Yes!” as in: “Yes, howzit?” In which case you answer: “No, fine.”
In much of the outside world, this is a comforting phrase: “Now now, it’s really not so bad.” But in South Africa, this phrase is used in the following manner: “Just wait, I’ll be there now now.” It means “a little after now”.
Kumkani Brand News
Kumkani welcomes all the visitors to our lovely country and we hope this word guide will help you to enjoy your trip.
The modern South African kitchen is international. But there are some typical South African traditions and dishes.The most important of these culinary traditions is the “Boerekos“. This “farm food” stems from the Boerish settlers and is characterised by hearty meals with a lot of meat.
Very much alive is the Braaivleis tradition, a barbecue of lamb, beef and/or pork with sweet vegetables and salad. On warm evenings you can smell the grill fumes everywhere in the country. A fish barbeque, especially the “Snoek-Braai”, is a speciality of Cape Town.
From the days of the Voortrekkers originates Potjiekos. Lamb or any other meat is stewed for hours with lots of vegetables in a round cast-iron pot on three legs over a fire.
A simple meal, which is eaten daily in the entire country, is “Pap met Wors”, maize mash with fried onions and beef or sheep sausage, the “Boerewors”.
Also the “Melktart” (Milk Tart) and a “Waterblommetjie Bredie” (Waterflower stew) are typical dishes of the Boerekos.
Unique is the Cape Malay kitchen. The Malays who were forcefully taken as slaves to the Cape, brought their cooking methods with them and modified them with local ingredients such as raisins and pumpkin.
Typically, a Cape Malay dish contains lots of turmarin, here called “Borrie”, kardamom, cinnamon, ginger, garlic and raisins. Except for pork and wine, any local ingredient is used. Typical dishes are “Bobotie”, a mince meat/raisin bake with lots of cinnamon and laurel leaves, and “Roties”, wheat flour pita bread with a filling of deliciously spiced vegetables and meat.
Kumkani Brand News
To complement your South African dish you must try the king of South African Wines, Kumkani. This multi-award winning iconic South African wine ranges have a wide range of wines to suit any connoisseurs palate.
Read more on www.southafrica-travel.net
Two South African restaurants are again on the World’s 50 Best Restaurant list.
The big news for South Africa however it that Constantia Uitsig’s La Colombe has moved up 26 places since last year to take a very impressive number 12 spot. Another regular South African restaurant on the list, Le Quartier Français, moved up 6 positions to number 31.
A huge achievement for both these restaurants in a very important year for South Africa.
The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy compiles this list of restaurants. The panel includes 806 people including top chefs, gourmands, restaurateurs and food critics.
Iconic South African wine brand Kumkani, congratulates these restaurants for their achievement and for setting the standard.
With less than 50 days to go to the Kick of the World Cup, visitors can get familiarized with some of the South African English slang words.
South African English is both rich and peculiar. Here, cars stop at robots, not traffic lights. A pickup truck is a bakkie, sneakers are takkies, a hangover is a babbelas, and people greet each other with a heita or howzit.
Eish! expresses surprise, frustration or outrage, and a juicy piece of gossip is likely to be greeted with a drawn-out see-ree-ous!. An particularly handy word is sharp (often doubled up for effect as sharp-sharp!), used as a greeting, a farewell, for agreement or just to express enthusiasm.
Voetsek! means go away right now – or else – and a bliksem is what will happen to you if you don’t voetsek.
The nicest South African slang word is lekker which means nice, but it is nicer than nice because it is South African.
So when you visit South Africa you must drink a lekker true South African Kumkani wine. This wine embodies all the aspects that make our country so unique.
Cape Town is set to draw thousands of tourists in the upcoming FIFA World Cup. Visitors to Cape Town will be able to explore the beauty of the mountains, the winelands and will also be able to see and experience the cultural melting pot that is Cape Town.
One of the place that will attract tourists is the colourful Cape Malay Quarter, namely the Bo-Kaap.
Bo-Kaap, aka Schotsche Kloof (Scottish ravine), belongs to one of the most interesting parts of Cape Town. With its picturesque houses lined along steep and winding roads, you’ll find it on the itinerary of most visitors to the city. But the Cape is vast and beautiful – so what exactly makes Bo-Kaap so special – could it be the rich heritage or the tantalising food? Why don’t you explore and decide?
Taking a step back…
Bo-Kaap is the oldest Malay settlement in South Africa. It is nestled below Signal Hill where you’ll find the historically significant Noon Gun. Most Capetonians are accustomed to its loud bang at midday but the tradition began in the late 1800s to signal to farmers that ships had docked and were ready to trade. The hill is also the resting place of Tuang Guru, originally a prince from the Ternate Islands and believed to be the founder of the Cape’s Islamic community. A hallmark of the Cape Malay people is the warm hospitality they extend to all their visitors, which brings us to the exciting part – the food.
The Bo-Kaap neighbourhood is not your average food destination and its Southeast-Asian ties mean the menu is anything but bland. The Cape Malay’s fusion of Asian, European and Mediterranean flavours are available at many high-end as well as local authentic restaurants around Cape Town.
The Cape Malayan dishes like Bobotie and Biryani pairs well with spicy wines like the Kumkani Shiraz Cabernet . This wine has interesting summer berry aromas with spicy and toasty flavours.
Read More: gotravel24
Wines of South Africa (WOSA) has launched a two-minute animated video celebrating wine and soccer. This video was launched at the Prowien Trade Fair in Germany.
This video portrays many aspects of our amazing country and our stunning winelands. Kumkani Wines applauds the efforts of WOSA to promote South African wine and we hope this video is a huge success.
Opening a bottle of bubbly has always been a thrill for me. But this guy has taken opening bubbly to a new level.
A restaurant manager in Sandton, Andrew Duminy, has successfully set a new Guinness World Record for opening the most sparkling wine bottles in one minute using a sabre according to the traditional ceremonial sabrage.
Sabrage is a lavish ceremonial technique whereby a champagne or sparkling wine bottle is removed with a sabre or sword. The force of the blade causes the cork and collar to shoot off the neck of the bottle in a show stopping display of bubbles and blasts.
The world record attempt began at exactly 5:00pm on Valentine’s Day at The Bull Run Restaurant. Exactly one minute later at 5:01pm Andrew Duminy had successfully opened 27 bottles of Pongrácz with his sabre, smashing the previous record of 21 bottles set by Canadian Andre Saint Jacques in 2005.
South Africa is commonly known as the Rainbow nation with a vast array of cultures and traditions. This is also true with regards to cuisine.
Barbara Ludman recently wrote that it was the search for food that shaped modern South Africa: spices drew the Dutch East India Company to Java in the mid-1600s, and the need for a half-way refreshment stop for its ships rounding the Cape impelled the Company to plant a farm at the tip of Africa. There are sections of Commander Jan van Riebeeck’s wild almond hedge still standing in the Kirstenbosch Gardens in Cape Town.
That farm changed the region forever. The Company discovered it was easier to bring in thousands of hapless slaves from Java to work in the fields than to keep trying to entrap the local people, mostly Khoi and San, who seemed singularly unimpressed with the Dutch and their ways. The Malay slaves brought their cuisine, perhaps the best-known of all South African cooking styles.
The French Huguenots arrived soon after the Dutch, and changed the landscape in wonderful ways with the vines they imported. They soon discovered a need for men and women to work in their vineyards, and turned to the Malay slaves (and the few Khoi and San they could lure into employment).
Much later, sugar farmers brought indentured labourers from India to cut the cane. The British, looking for gold and empire, also brought their customs and cuisine, as did German immigrants.
And black communities carried on eating their traditional, healthy diet: game, root vegetables and wild greens, berries, millet, sorghum and maize, and protein-rich insects like locusts.
Today the resultant kaleidoscope – the famous “rainbow” – applies not only to the people but to the food, for one finds in South Africa the most extraordinary range of cuisines.
Kumkani Brand News
To complete these amazing dishes South Africa also have extraordinary wines. Like the multi award winning Kumkani Lanner Hill Sauvignon Blanc. This full bodied wine has ripe gooseberry flavours with a crisp lingering finish.
In the past few years many new wine brands and wine estates has been established in South Africa. This implies that to get the best out of South African wine and wine tourism a well written and researched guide is essential.
One such a guide is The Essential Guide To South African Wines: Terroir & Travel. This is the second edition of the illustrated guide to South Africa’s premium wines and it retails at about R200.
Caroline Hurry writes that this up-to-date, informative reference work provides vital local knowledge on the practicalities of visiting the winelands.
Published by Cheviot, it presents the wine-producing regions in the simple wine pockets system. Individual pockets highlight a specific terroir unit along with local wine styles, providing insight into the specific qualities of each wine-producing area.
The guide helps you to select a pocket, jump into the car and visit some of the wineries of that area.
Detailed relief maps provide GPS co-ordinates and are backed by downloadable waypoints and routes on the website www.cheviot-publishing.com
Every pocket takes you on a journey, discovering the terroir, viticulture, winemaking techniques and the flagship wines of some of the top producers.
Kumkani Brand News
Cellar door tastings of the multi award winning Kumkani wines can be done at our Welmoed and Helderberg Cellars. For directions please visit our website
Christmas in South Africa is a summer holiday. In December, the southern summer brings glorious days of sunshine that carry an irresistible invitation to the beaches, the rivers, and the shaded mountain slopes. Then the South African holiday season reaches its height. Schools are closed, and camping is the order of the day. In South Africa there is no snow, but it has many flowers, many beautiful varieties of cultivated and wild flowers being in their full pride.
In the cities and towns carolers make their rounds on Christmas Eve. Church services are held on Christmas morning. Christmas Eve celebrations in larger centers include “Carols by Candlelight” and special screen and floor shows.
Homes are decorated with pine branches, and all have the decorated Christmas fir in a corner, with presents for the children around. At bedtime on Christmas Eve, children may also hang up their stockings for presents from Father Christmas.
Many South Africans have a Christmas dinner in the open-air lunch. For many more, it is the traditional dinner of either leg of lamb, roast beef, mince pies, or suckling pig, yellow rice with raisins, vegetables, and plum pudding, crackers, paper hats, and all. In the afternoon, families go out into the country and usually there are games or bathing in the warm sunshine, and then home in the cool of the evening. Boxing Day is also a proclaimed public holiday usually spent in the open air. It falls on December 26 and is a day of real relaxation.
Kumkani Brand News
The Kumkani Merlot Pinotage 2007 will complement the traditional beef or lamb dishes and will complete the uniquely South African Christmas dinner
Drinking and Driving over the Festive Season? Then it’s time to ask Goodfellas to the party.
Cathy Marston writes “Sadly, I realise that this is not the norm here in SA. The drink-driving stats in this country are horrendous with alcohol being blamed for 50% of the 18,000 deaths on our roads every year – yes, that number is correct – 18,000 deaths a year. A massive sea-change is needed in people’s attitudes to drinking and driving, and one company which is providing a real alternative to this is Goodfellas. They offer a membership service which you can call after one too many drinks and they will come to wherever you are and drive you safely home in your own car.”
According to Alison Brussow, marketing manager for Goodfellas, all the drivers have to pass stringent background checks, driving tests on both manual and automatic cars and undergo regular training by the company. Both Morell and Mogamat had branded uniforms and ID cards and we were given their names by the call centre when we rang to book the service so there was no possibility of any mistakes. And we felt completely safe in their hands – much more so than when we pick up a random taxi from the rank, something which is an added boon for women going home on their own as well.
Drinking and driving is a complete social no-no in the UK – if ever I contemplated getting behind the wheel after a few drinks, then the thought of my friends’ total disgust and disapproval is always enough to change my mind. I have heard various excuses over the years such as “Well, we have to drink and drive in SA because we have no public transport!” or “I’m a really good driver so alcohol doesn’t affect me like other people” and really folks, enough is enough. The choices are simple -
- – Drink, but don’t drive
- – Drive, but don’t drink
- – Call Goodfellas or somebody like them.
and with the Festive season in full swing, there are plenty of opportunities to use a service like this and I fully intend to do so. After all, if it’s good enough for the Sharks, for South African Breweries and for Bob Skinstad, then it’s good enough for me too.”
www.gfellas.co.za Tel: 0861 433 552
Kumkani Brand News
Kumkani Wines supports this initiative and urges consumers to make use of this service.
In a recent online poll by GoTravel24 the Kruger National Park were voted South Africa’s favourite game reserve.
In this poll, fairly unsurprisingly, the Kruger National Park that pretty much wiped the floor and won with a solid 36% of the vote.
The sheer size of Kruger is extraordinary – it is nearly 19 000 square kilometres – bigger than Gauteng and about the size of Wales – and hosts all the game you could ever wish to see. According to a 2004 count, there are over 1500 lion, nearly 30 000 buffalo, 11 500 elephant – the numbers are staggering. And it’s over 100 years old so they certainly know what they’re doing. The science that goes into accommodating so many animals in such a massive space is incredibly detailed so that we, as good South Africans, can enjoy the beautiful things our land has to offer.
The other reserves on the list were:
Tsitsikamma National Park
Pilanesberg National Park
Kgalagadi Transfrontier (originally the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park)
Hluhluwe Game Reserve
Kumkani Brand News
South Africa is blessed with amazing game reserves and all of them contribute to the uniquely South African experience and lifestyle. Kumkani supports all uniquely South African tourist attractions.
Apart from the amazing beaches, wild life and natural beauty South Africa also over tourists unique experiences in the form of World Heritage Sites.
South Africa boasts numerous World Heritage Sites, including Robben Island and the Cradle of Humankind.
The lesser-known, yet fascinating Vredefort Dome, situated just 120kms south of Johannesburg, near Parys, was declared a World Heritage Site in 2005. According to the UNESCO website, the Vredefort Dome is the oldest discovered astrobleme (a structure created by large meteorite impact), dating back more than two million years. Spanning 190 kilometres, it’s also the world’s largest impact site.
According to UNESCO, the Vredefort Dome is unique in that “it is the only example to provide a full geological profile of an astrobleme below the crater floor”, which makes it a vital link to understanding the earth’s evolution and geology. Parts of the Dome are open to the public.
Kumkani Brand News
This brand is an uniquely South African wine brand and we celebrate all the things that makes our country unique.
Seven wineland restaurants won an “Oscar” in the Prudential Eat Out Top 10 Restaurant Awards 2009 announced this week. Restaurants from Constantia, Franschhoek and Stellenbosch trump the biggest food event on the culinary calendar.
The Stellenbosch winelands again won three places in the Eat Out Top Ten. A triumvirate of three of South Africa’s top chefs consolidates the golden triangle of the Helderberg as the culinary epicentre of the winelands – led by David Higgs of Rust en Vrede (“gorgeous attention to detail in every dish” commented the judges), Michael Broughton of Terroir (“An exciting menu with the finest sauces and some classics revisited with a modern philosophy”) and Bertus Basson of Overture (“Modern architecture, mind-blowing views…unique fresh flavours and combinations”).
Wineland restaurants have a great track record in the service stakes after winning the annual Eat Out service award four years in a row – Terroir (2006), Le Quartier Francais (2007), Terroir (2008) and Rust en Vrede (2009). With the FIFA World Soccer Cup 2010 six months away, service standards are critical to its success.
Eat Out editor Abigail Donnelly warns, “Service in South Africa is unique, friendly and willing, but we still need lots of training in the hospitality industry. Excellences shines through in efficient yet invisible service … Hospitality and caring should come before technique.”
Kumkani Brand News
The Eat Out awards is a prestigious award and we would like to congratulate all the winners and would like to especially thank the Wineland restaurants for helping to make the Cape a world class tourist destination.
Cape Town has won the 2009 Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Award in the Best Destination category.
Cape Town Tourism CEO Mariëtte du Toit-Helmbold said, “Cape Town Tourism is thrilled with the news that Cape Town has won the 2009 Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Award in the Best Destination category. Being the first city to win in this category is an incredible achievement and testament to Cape Town’s ability to lead the way in terms of global responsible tourism. We are very proud to be part of team Cape Town and commend the City of Cape Town, our partners and the tourism industry for your commitment to this initiative.”
The awards were founded in 2004 by responsibletravel.com, which runs the awards in partnership with the Daily Telegraph, Geographical Magazine – the magazine of the Royal Geographical Society – and World Travel Market. Virgin Holidays became a headline sponsor of the awards in 2007 and has continued to support them since then.
The central tenet of the awards is that all types of tourism – from niche to mainstream – can and should be operated in a way that respects and benefits destinations and local people. The awards recognise individuals, companies and organisations in the travel industry that are making a significant commitment to the culture and economies of local communities and are providing a positive contribution to biodiversity conservation.
Kumkani Brand News
We congratulate the City of Cape Town for this great achievement. We suggest that they celebrate with a truly Cape sparkling wine. The Kumkani Infiniti is a Méthode Cap Classique sparkling which is perfect for this celebration.
The Rainbow Nation, South Africa, is an extremely diverse and unique country with a wide array of cultures, wildlife and vegetation. The wines are a product and a representation of this diverse and vibrant uniqueness of this amazing country.
The vegetation of a small part of this country embodies the diversity and variety of the land.
The Cape Floral Kingdom is the smallest and richest plant kingdom on earth. The Table Mountain National Park alone has more plant species within its 22 000 hectares than the whole British Isles or New Zealand.
A stretch of land and sea spanning 90 000 square kilometres, or 0.05% of the earth’s land area, the Cape floral kingdom contains roughly 3% of the world’s plant species – at about 456 species per 1 000km2.
Of the 9 600 species of vascular plants (plants with vessels for bearing sap) found in the Cape floral kingdom, about 70% are endemic, ie occur nowhere else on earth.
Wines of South Africa ( WOSA ) indicates that the diversity in soils, matched by the diversity in climate and geography, create a treasure trove of winemaking possibilities. The result is a huge array of flavour and aroma profiles in South African wines.
Kumkani Brand News:
Derived from the Xhosa word meaning ‘king’, Kumkani is an award-winning wine that celebrates South Africa’s rich heritage, eclectic mix of people and abundance of natural resources. Thanks to the fertile soil, suitable South African climate and winemaker’s excellence, Kumkani is worshipped by wine lovers.
South Africa is a weird and wonderful place, and has spawned some truly gifted pioneers and inventors, as well as possessing some unique and marvelous, biological and geological attributes.
Below is a list of some interesting facts about South Africa
1. South Africa is home to the world’s smallest succulent plants (less than 10 mm) and the largest (the baobab).
2. There are only 12 countries in the world that supply tap water that is fit to drink, and South Africa is one of them. Our tap water quality is third best overall in the world.
3. The Tugela Falls is the second highest waterfall in the world, where the water tumbles down 850 metres. First place goes to the Angel Falls in Venezuela at 979 metres.
4. There are 18 000 indigenous vascular plant species in South Africa of which 80% are uniquely South African.
5. Blyde River Canyon is the third largest canyon in the world – and the largest green one. The Grand Canyon in the US is the biggest, and the Fish River Canyon in Namibia the second, but both are dry as bones.
6. South African grasslands have 30 species per square kilometre, greater than the biodiversity of rainforests.
7. According to recent studies, the star-watching town of Sutherland in the Northern Cape is one of the most geologically stable places on Earth, yet it has a 66-million year old volcano, not yet officially extinct.
8. The only street in the world to house two Nobel Peace prize winners is in Soweto. Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu both have houses in Vilakazi Street in Soweto.
9. Walt Disney serves South African wine exclusively at its 73-acre Animal Kingdom Lodge in the United States.
10. South Africa has the longest wine route in the world, the R62 wine route
11. South Africa is the world’s largest producer of macadamia nuts and the nuts and oils are exported to countries across the world.
12. South Africa is the only country in the world where you can order something called monkey gland steak at a restaurant without the risk of a real internal organ being placed before you. It was invented many decades ago by overseas chefs as a pointed insult, aimed at the brash inhabitants of Johannesburg who poured Worcestershire and tomato sauce over everything.
13. No other country eats as much kingklip as South Africans do (also known as Congrio, Ling and Rockling in other parts of the southern hemisphere).
14. The world’s first heart transplant was done in South Africa in 1967 by South African Dr Chris Barnard.
15. South Africa also has the world’s most progressive and admired water legislation, and it is making a real difference on the ground. Since 1998 when the so-called “Blue Revolution” began, four million more poor people have access to clean water.
16. South Africa is ranked number one in the world for its floral kingdom
17. South Africa’s Coastal Management policy is one of the best in the world with the country being the first outside Europe to gain Blue Flag status for its coastal management.
18. South Africa is the sole producer of the Mercedes Benz, C Class, right hand drive vehicles
19. General Motors South Africa will be the only manufacturing site outside of the United States to build the Hummer H3 vehicle.
20. South Africans are natural inventors, giving the world those breakwater dolosse and the automatic pool cleaner.
21. The Population is 45 million.
22. Gauteng has the most advanced infrastructure in Africa.
23. South Africa has the third highest level of biodiversity in the world.
24. South Africa is the second largest exporter of fruit in the world.
25. South Africa is five times the size of Japan and three times the size of Texas.