Saturday, March 28, 2009
© By Rosanne Turner (written for www.gotravel24.com)
Morning markets and movies in the cellar – a typical Hermanus weekend
The aroma of cinnamon pancakes always evokes strong childhood memories and a sense of ‘feel good’. A tough choice each Saturday morning is deciding at which farmers market to enjoy this sweet treat.
The choice at hand is between the sophisticated and trendy Boeremark held at Hermanuspietersfontein, which is only a 2-minute walk from home, or a short drive to the Fernkloof Farmers Market, a more typical country affair. I honestly can’t say which is the better of the two; you will have to experience both and make the decision yourself – if you can!
A friendly scarecrow directs you from the Main Road in Voelklip, towards the Fernkloof Nature Reserve where the farmers market is held every Saturday morning. Arrive early – the market starts at 8:00am – to get parking, and ensure your favourite treat isn’t sold out. Everyone has their ‘must have’ delicacy. For my husband, it is the organic filter coffee, and a Stanford Slice – an old-fashioned custard slice, very different from the premix type found in supermarkets these days. I need my weekend fix of fresh spanakopita or a delicious Mediterranean veggie pie, followed by moist triple chocolate brownies.
My daughter (never a big eater), buys a packet of sunflower seeds, unusual for a child I know, and heads off to Kids Clay, where she remains entertained for hours, to create a little masterpiece, to add to the cupboard-full already at home.
As a local, it is never necessary to arrange to meet friends at the market; you will always catch up with a few. As the kids get creative with the clay, play in the sandpit or with the hula-hoops for sale, adults get a caffeine dose and debate what to do for the weekend. A local marimba band usually adds to the laid-back atmosphere. For the health conscious, there are many options available, from wheat-free baked goods to organic vegetables and freshly squeezed juices. If Saturday is your ‘cheat day’, then plenty of decadent delights are on offer.
A little more sophisticated, but equally as laid back, is the Boeremark, held at Hermanuspietersfontein. Somehow, here it seems quite acceptable to enjoy a glass of wine at 9:00am with breakfast. Grab a complimentary plate and cutlery, (no paper variety here), and start at one end, loading up from your favourite stalls. Buy a bottle of wine, made on the premises, find a table under a shade umbrella, and relax as you while-away the morning, a great way to start the weekend. If you get really into it, stay and watch Saturday afternoon rugby, shown on a big screen in the winery, while sipping on Hermanuspietersfontein wines – a more refined option that the usual beer and biltong viewing.
If your weekend away to Hermanus starts on a Friday night, I can highly recommend trying Movie night in the cellar at Hermanuspietersfontein. You will need to book in advance, and it is not every Friday, so give the cellar a call to find out the schedule.
We arrived with friends at the cellar on a Friday evening to watch Mama Mia, not expecting much more than something a little different to do on a Friday night. After all, it was only R20 a ticket. What a pleasant surprise! On arrival, we were presented with a complimentary glass of wine and an old-fashioned paper funnel of popcorn. With the musty aroma of wine barrels around us, we found our seats and took in the atmosphere of the cellar. With surround sound, a big screen and a glass of local wine, this quaint movie option beats the large mall movie houses any day for a memorable evening.
If you decide to spend a weekend away in Hermanus, instead of stocking up at the supermarket for braai and picnic supplies, try visiting the markets for delicious local fare. Instead of a trolley and queues at the supermarket, bring a basket and do your weekend grocery shop in the open air. From home-cured meats, tangy cheeses, pickles, and preserves, to freshly baked breads, decadent cakes and pastries, organic vegetables and even wine, your basket will be overflowing, making for a memorable gastronomic weekend.
Hermanuspietersfontein: contact Ilse-Marie for more details about events: 028 316 1875. www.hpf1855.co.za
Fernkloof Farmers Market: 072 883 3894