Wine with heart: Winters Drift – worth the drive

Wine with heart: Winters Drift – worth the drive
Nicolette Waterford

Nicolette Waterford

I am loving each sip of the Winters Drift 2013 release Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The Chardonnay is partially oaked and sells for R97 per bottle, while the Pinot Noir is perfectly priced at R120, a steal for Pinot Noir. When visiting, don’t miss out on tasting the Sauvignon Blanc, Rose and Shiraz in the Winters Drift range too – all retailing for less than R100 per bottle.

Winters Drift wines, named after the ‘winter ford’ crossing of the Palmiet River on Glen Elgin, which formed part of the original ox wagon trail through the Overberg, honour the remarkable story and legacy of two pioneering and philanthropic bachelor brothers, Ted and Harry Molteno. These young men purchased Glen Elgin in 1903 and dedicated their lives to transforming their farm, and in fact the whole valley, into a leading fruit-farming area. In time ‘Elgin’ referred not only to Glen Elgin, but also to the railway station built upon their farm, and soon the entire valley became known as Elgin. Glen Elgin was bequeathed to the Molteno Brothers Trust, with profits to be used for the furtherance of ‘educational, cultural and charitable interests’.

The historic Elgin Station is home to Winters Drift wines. A visit is food for the soul and soaking up the rural bliss and old world charm is the perfect way to spend a lazy day in the “platteland”. Enjoy the new Winters Drift releases and the ever-changing fine seasonal fare at the quaint railway-style café whilst the kids play safely in the new kiddies’ playground. Go French and end your meal with a game of boules and you might be lucky enough to see one of the grain-laden trains trundling past. And don’t miss the Elgin Cool Wine and Country Festival on May 3 when Winters Drift and sixteen other Elgin wineries will be offering a day filled with fine wines, good food and plenty of entertainment for the whole family, between 9.30am and 5pm. Day Passes can be purchased on the day, at any of the participating wine farms or at the Elgin Tourism office, for just R50 per adult including all wine tasting and entertainment. Children enter free of charge. Breakfasts and teas will be available but all lunches need to be pre-booked and paid for in advance.
Don’t miss the Winters Drift Festival Breakfast at Platform 1 Eatery (9.30am to 11am), or the the Winters Drift Festival Lunch and All Day Menu, also at Platform 1 Eatery.

(For lunch on May 3, call 082 379 2623, or send an email to

* For more information on the Elgin Cool Wine and Country Festival, visit

More about Platform 1:
Platform 1, a must stop-off in Elgin, is now open on Sundays as well from 8.30am until 4pm.The experience is cosy and relaxed and the ever-changing blackboard menu offers delectable seasonally-inspired dishes, served on wooden boards, with a commitment to local and sustainable ingredients. The dishes are complemented by the Winters Drift range of fine wines, which can be ordered by the glass or the bottle at cellar door prices.

The eatery also offers:
• Koek en Tee: On Wednesdays as usual
• Music nights: A ticket for R170 per person includes the show, a light supper and a glass of Winters Drift wine.
• Movie nights: At Platform 2 on Tuesdays. Tickets at R115 per head include a movie ticket and a delicious home-cooked meal. All bookings need to be made 24 hours in advance.
• Special events: Platform 1 Eatery will be hosting a Gourmet Mushroom Day, with mushroom guru Gary Goldman. Dates: May 1 and 2. Each day will include a quick talk on mushrooms, mushroom foraging and lunch with a glass of Winters Drift wine.
Cost: R395 per person per day
For more information, visit, or