One of the oldest wine domaines of the Cape is Boschendal in Franschhoek. Founded in 1685, this wine estate is one with a rich history. The beautiful backdrops of the dramatic mountains in the Wemmershoek valley, together with the old vineyards, beautiful monumental Manor Houses, their well-known wines and the iconic Pique Nique, makes Boschendal truly a must visit place! A few weeks back I did Le Pique Nique together with some friends, and it was lovely! I did it before, many years ago, but they changed quite a few things at Boschendal now, so I liked to experience the new Pique Nique.
It’s good for you to know that Boschendal recently moved their classic Boschendal picnic to the Rhone Homestead lawns. And you can choose now between two styles of picnics. With the Rhone Picnic, you sit at a table and get served by a staff member. They bring your wine (start with the rosé bubbles, it is great!) and your pre-ordered picnic baskets, which you can unpack yourself. Water and wine you can order any time, and after you finished (most) of what’s in the basket, the staff will make sure you’ll get a dessert afterwards. The Rhone picnic costs R440 for two people sharing, including a 10% service fee, excluding beverages. In our baskets were lots of things; cold cheeses and meat selection, coronation chicken, green salad with olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette, delicious crisp French bread, duck liver, aioli, potato salad, coleslaw, mustard mayo, deli preserves, and a cheese cake in a jar to finish off. But check before you order, as some items change from time to time.
Source photo above (with glass rosé and picnic basket on table)
Besides the more formal, classic style Boschendal picnic (which we ordered ) now you can also choose The Werf Garden Picnic; a more casual, simple picnic, which can be enjoyed under the trees on the Pavilion lawn. This is the location where in the past all Boschendal’s picnics took place. I would specifically recommend this type of picnic if you are with small children, or if you’d like to relax (or sleep!) in one of the hammocks, read your book in meanwhile or if you’d like to bring some own chairs or blankets. The area here is partly survived but not full like it is at Rhone Homestead. The price for a picnic basket for two people is R360, also including service charge but excluding drinks.
Source photo above (with hammock and bean bags)
You can enjoy the Rhone classical Boschendal Picnic every day, and the Werf Garden Picnics from Wednesday to Sunday. You can reserve your basket upfront online, but keep in mind (!) you can only cancel free of charge up to 72 hours before time of arrival. (Yes, this is also in the event of rain, as the picnics will be served then somewhere inside, which is – of course – a bit strange for a picnic)
I did enjoy the new concept Rhone picnic, although the menu isn’t spectacular and could be easily done by yourself, it is a nice outing in a beautiful place!
More information about how to book the Boschendal picnics and to view the menu, click here.