Off the Beeten track – Riebeeck Kasteel.

My partner and I decided to take a trip and stay over in Riebeeck Kasteel, all before he is completely encumbered with pain and medication from an operation which will see him flat in bed for the next two weeks.The spontaneity of his idea to retreat to unknown territory was quickly met with Google searches of where to stay, research and much enthusiasm to explore and venture out into relatively uncharted territory. 
The Riebeeck valley, located on the slopes of its own mountain, surrounds olive groves and vineyards. The Riebeeck valley is the place to be in November where the annual olive expo is held at the Olive boutique. 

We paid a very brief visit to Riebeek Kasteel and sister town Riebeek West in the beginning of the year, at the time our main attraction was the infamous coffee spot and roastery, unbeknown to us, there’s an entire town to explore and walk about. Based on a rather brief but pleasant experience, we proceeded to book our accommodation there and plan a day out. We stayed overnight at the hospitable and cozy Royal Hotel. 

Having driven only an hour away from Durbanville, Just outside of Cape Town, which is where we live. Upon arrival in the quaint yet buzzing town, we immediately set out for the advertised Village market in Riebeeck West, we had seen a post about the market in the week leading up to our visit. I am a frequent market goer, I just cannot resist a good local market. The market is held on the first Saturday of every month from 09:00 am to 13:00pm. The market is quite small and feature’s local stalls showcasing locality of produce, handmade crafts to tasty samoosas and a local business selling their own bottled mission olives in brine and their very own olive oil. The atmosphere is that of a small town, where everybody knows each other.

The photo taken above is of Les and Fiona Hellmann of Kasteel Kat olive products, their passion for their local products is quite contagious. I think it’s really imperative we support our local producers and buy local and seasonal ingredients. Now what to do with the jar of olives I purchased from them, beside eat the entire jar? Make olive bread of course! (More on that later)

Back in Riebeeck Kasteel, we made a point of taking a walk through most of the town’s hub, to my surprise there was a artisanal deli on almost every corner. My favourite was Crisp, known as the “biggest little market”, with lots of seasonal fruit and vegetables and of course speciality pantry staples like saffron in a cute little tin or arborio rice in rice burlap bag sort of material. I’m a sucker for packaging, can you tell?!

We went back to our favourite little coffee spot, Beans about coffee. To say My boyfriend is something of a serious coffee fiend, is quite an understatement. His eyes lit up when we saw a new coffee arrival announcement on the chalk board (specifically Mexican coffee). 
For a really decent cup of coffee , a really refreshing freshly squeezed juice and a decadent slice of cake, Beans about Coffee is the place to go! 

The evening, started off with complementary cake and coffee/tea for hotel guests, we sat in front of a crackling comforting fire enjoying the far too indulgent chocolate cheesecake with coffee. After supper, we had retreated back to the hotel and enjoyed (possibly) the most tastiest Gin&Tonic we’ve ever had! The gin used was a fynbos infused one.The fragrant tipples were served in cognac glasses with seasonal berries such as gooseberries,strawberries  and with a slice of zesty lime. I think they may be on to something here…the full experience( yes, it was an experience :)) of the citrusy notes and fynbos flavours married perfectly in the glass.We thoroughly enjoyed our stay with the Royal Hotel, their old world charm and incredibly warm hospitality is what really sealed the deal. 

I look forward to sharing more of my travels with you soon, like ‘unusual suspects’ this too will be an occasional series of posts together with my regular scheduled posts. 

Happy traveling, exploring and eating! x
**Disclaimer: this post was not sponsored in any way. All costs of our trip and purchases my partner and I paid for. Promoting of the town and the local producers in this post is done with a bona fide intention**

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