1. Midlands vineyards vibes at Abingdon
Abingdon Wine Estate has garnered a reputation, both for its award-winning wine (it was the first farm to produce a certified estate wine from KwaZulu-Natal grapes) and for its food (the restaurant was voted SA’s Best Kept Secret in the 2019 American Express Dining Awards), so dining outside beneath a cloud of blooming wisteria or a towering oak tree is as heavenly as it sounds.
It specialises in harvest boards and tapas, but we can highly recommend the pork belly bowl with crispy crackling and fresh apple sauce, and the deboned oxtail bowl, served with either dipping ciabatta or a puff pastry lid. Don’t pass on dessert either — the boozy Van der Hum crème brûlée especially. Obviously, you’ll be spoilt for choice with the wine list too.
2. Camp Orchards’ picnic in the hills
Camp Orchards’ new restaurant The Harvest offers a few dining options. First, you can build your own plate or picnic by selecting from the deli’s harvest table, which groans under the weight of freshly prepared dishes and treats such as quiches and chocolate brownies. Otherwise, straight up, you can order a picnic.
Book your picnic for Thursday to Saturday and you’ll find it filled with goodies, including cured meats, chicken liver parfait, onion jam, chilli feta cheese, sourdough olive batons and pastéis de nata. For the kids, you can order a bento box with fresh nibbles — farm fresh and harvested daily. You can also stock up on pantry basics like bread, milk, eggs and cheese to take home.
It’s a perfect spot for socially distanced socialising.