The oh-so-elegant La Motte Wine Estate in Franschhoek is, if anything, one of the most perfect wine estates to enjoy a Winelands Tea. It offers preserved Cape heritage and outstanding talent, which permeates down from owner Hanneli Rupert-Koegelenberg.
This leading estate also oozes natural beauty and femininity; no doubt a result of Hanneli Rupert-Koegelenberg’s gentle overseeing touches…
A culture of excellence neatly ingrained throughout
The estate motto, “A culture of excellence,” is fitting, as La Motte breeds excellence. This is evident in the estate and its offerings – and also in its ode to talented South African great and landscape painter, Jacob Hendrik Pierneef. (Pierneef is also whom the estate’s stylish restaurant, Pierneef à La Motte, takes its name from.)
The estate has an assortment of interesting things to enjoy, like a winetasting facility, farm shop, free-to-visit La Motte Museum and Pierneef à La Motte Restaurant.
While our focal point remained the restaurant, on our first ever visit, we enjoyed exploring every inch of this lovely estate.
Pierneef à La Motte: Where modern style meets Cape heritage
Pierneef à La Motte Restaurant reflects both namesake, Jacob Hendrik Pierneef and its natural surroundings… It is, above all else, an oasis of calm, beauty and modern stylishness.
For their Winelands tea, Pierneef à La Motte Restaurant offers a range of seating options. This includes out on the ‘stoep’, in the garden, inside the restaurant or out on the deck. Like the rest of the stylish Pierneef à La Motte Restaurant, the deck is a tranquil Winelands setting.
Here, attractive aesthetic touches – like lime green, woven chairs and wooden influences – give a gentle nod to nature. And, with oak trees and lush garden spaces nearby, it’s not hard to see where the inspiration hails from…
Our table on the deck was comfortable and picture perfect – especially as it offers a secluded view out over the nearby pond.
Still, we were quite envious of those who sat in the garden, as it’s delightful and ideal for kiddies. While it features a play area, giant chess set, lawn spaces and flowing water, it was the mother-child statue that caught my eye.
Inside the restaurant, meanwhile, suspended ceramic chandeliers, provide a jaw-dropping first impression… Though so too does the restaurant’s all-glass front, lounge and elegant seating. I also liked the open kitchen, which lends a more engaging atmosphere to diners.
The interiors combine to form one elegant, yet lavish space with a modern feel. The restaurant’s reinvented Cape Winelands cuisine keeps a rich, long history alive, which is quite unique to the Western Cape.
Tea on the deck, presented on a silver platter
Upon arriving for our Winelands tea, we were immediately greeted by a pretty set table. Teatime at La Motte is a well thought-out affair, and the dainty, handmade tea sets are exclusively created for the estate by Ella-Lou O’Meara. (It’s wonderful to learn she is also the creative brain behind the suspended ceramic chandeliers.)
For sale in the farm shop, these dainty sets imitate Famille Rose cups once favoured and commissioned by wealthy Cape families.
Aside from mimicking old, aristocratic Cape teatime traditions, they add a really beautiful touch to the whole experience, making you feel rather royal! I found them exquisite and probably photographed them from every possible angle!
And, if the tea set doesn’t make you feel important, then the glass-covered silver platter (which the teatime treats get served on) will.
Teatime with La Motte and TWG
Back to the tea experience itself… First, you are presented with a (tea)box of wonders: Inside, a wide assortment of tea blends lie waiting. These are courtesy of TWG (The Wellness Group) and are hailed as the ‘finest teas of the world’.
We each had our own tea pot so, after allowing our tea to steep for between 2-3 minutes, we enjoyed some delicious tea. (It will definitely delight even the most devoted of tea lovers!) The best part of all though is the glorious tea aromas that drift up to you while you wait.
Aside from tea, you can also choose your choice of beverage. This includes soet sopies options (like L’Ormarins Port or Amarula), coffee or even a glass of La Motte Methode Cap Classique. Please Note: Additional beverage costs, ranging from R17-R65, are incurred.
The other standard platter options are:
- A smoked salmon sandwich, with cream cheese and chives;
- A sausage roll;
- Savoury tart;
- Soes of the day (traditional choux pastry puff with sweet filling);
Not only do these flavours combine perfectly, they also look wonderful side-by-side on your platter. In particular, I thought the protea-style soetkoekie and personalised Pierneef à La Motte chocolate coin (on our cake) were especially beautiful… (And they taste as good as they look!)
Photo credit: @jakkalsfontein
While the platter isn’t huge by some high/afternoon tea standards, it is an all-round quality serving. I loved every bite (which isn’t always the case at these teas) and with two cups of tea each, it’s enough to fill you. It’s also exquisitely set out, pleasing the eye as much as one’s tummy!
Out of the savoury eats, I so adored the spek (bacon) savoury tart the most, to the point that I could happily eat about five, if given the chance! But I also found the salmon sandwich really good and very fresh, a treat in itself.
For the sweet, the tea cake – which was lovely, light and a bit like chocolate mousse – and beautiful soes of the day were the overall winners for me. I really loved the soes, which had a delicious pink filling and strawberry and white chocolate topping… beyond good!
My Winelands Tea treat rates in at 9/10 rating for the tea and 8/10 rating for the platter. The platter is, in every way, beautiful to look at and tuck into, making for a memorable Winelands experience… but, for me, it could perhaps be slightly bigger given the per person price of R165.
Overall though, my experience of Pierneef à La Motte and their Winelands Tea was hard to fault, especially as the service was tops. Staff are well-trained and polite, and, in Pierre Theron, La Motte has a capable and warmly well-spoken restaurant manager.
Photo credit: @jakkalsfontein
The aesthetic experience, and quality of the food, could rival any restaurant in the world. And, in as far as Cape winelands restaurants go, Pierneef à La Motte easily sweeps the board of any I’ve visited to date.
The Winelands Tea is available between 09:00 am – 17:00 pm, Tuesday to Sunday and costs R165 per person. Reservations are essential.
Once you’ve dined at Pierneef à La Motte, I recommend visiting the farm shop (stocked with a wide assortment of home goods, gifts and wine), the chic tasting facility and of course, the La Motte Museum.
Each is fascinating and appealing in its own way and not to be missed… but, the museum, in particular, provides some wonderful insights into Hanneli herself and famed artist, Pierneef.
Photo credit: @jakkalsfontein
Thank you very much to La Motte, Blanche Bosman and Pierre Theron and his team for this delightful, quality Winelands Tea experience! It was a truly unique treat in the fair Franschhoek Valley.
For more information on La Motte’s quality Winelands Tea from Pierneef à La Motte, please contact: +27 (021) 876 8000 or email them at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also visit the La Motte website or find Pierneef à La Motte for yourself at: La Motte Wine Estate, R45 Main Road, Franschhoek, South Africa.
Author: Tamlyn Amber Ryan
Content writer by day and blogger by night, Tamlyn Ryan passionately runs her own travel blog, called Tamlyn Amber Wanderlust, from her home base of Cape Town, South Africa. And, despite a national diploma in Journalism, in her free time, Tamlyn’s preferred niche remains travel writing.
Tamlyn is a hopeless wanderer, equipped with an endless passion for road trips, carefully planned, holiday itineraries and, above all else, an innate love for the great outdoors.