It’s been years since I last visited La Petite Ferme – twelve to be exact. I was invited to experience a night in one of the luxury Winery Suites and try the Winter menu at the award-winning restaurant which serves country cuisine with a fresh contemporary touch.

For my non-Capetonian readers and those abroad; La Petite Ferme is a leading wine estate situated on the slopes of the Oliphants Pass and Middagkrans Mountain Range, overlooking the Franschhoek Valley. It Offers unparalleled vistas, luxurious accommodation and outstanding cuisine and wines.

The accommodation at La Petite Ferme comprises of five beautifully appointed Vineyard suites, five Manor House Suites – each with spectacular views and comfort and five luxury Winery Suites, recently converted from the old Wine Cellar.

The new luxury winery suites boast a contemporary, upmarket and on-trend interior and an exterior that, with just a touch of modernity, still reflects the remains of its previously Cape Vernacular style as a tribute to the heritage of the wine farm and the area.

The five Winery Suites are named after five of La Petite Ferme’s wine labels. The Viognier and the Baboon Rock celebrate La Petite Ferme’s white wines, while The Verdict, The Variation and The ZA celebrate its red varietals.

I was in the Viognier Suite – named after a white wine grape grown chiefly in the Rhône area of France…Franschhoek enjoys many similarities to the climate and terroir in the South of France and La Petite Ferme has built up a reputation of producing some of the finest examples of Viognier in South Africa.

All the renovations, décor and finishings were individually selected and customised for each room.

All the bathrooms feature top-end luxury fixtures and fittings and a ‘showstopper’ bath that occupies pride of place. This showstopper element is carried through and mirrored in the wallpaper of the bedrooms of the suites and each visually links to the name of the particular suite celebrating a La Petite Ferme wine label.

The suites named after white wines have baths and basins coloured with a champagne tint. Those named after red wines feature a red coloured bath and basin.

Each Suite has its own private balcony and there is a brand-new shared pool available for guests.

As winter sets in, La Petite Ferme’s culinary team, inspired by fresh, local produce and the country’s diverse cultures and cuisines, unveils its enticing new Winter Menu.

“Successfully showcasing the very best of seasonal food, the new menu features delicious ‘look-good/taste-good’ dishes specially curated by a team that always deliver an exceptional dining experience. The finely crafted dishes, including six new dishes warm the soul and the stomach, and of course are perfectly complemented by our exquisite wines,” says La Petite Ferme’s General Manager, Riaan Kruger.

For starters, I HIGHLY recommend the new Smoor Vis. The dish consists of dim sum in a Kombu Dashi with forest mushrooms and a micro salad.

Another fabulous starter is the Fried Bobotie Balls with a Cilantro Mint Yoghurt sauce. Other options available include a Fig and Ricotta Cigar, Venison Liver Parfait and Soup of the Day.

My choice for mains was the succulent, beautifully tender Karoo Lamb. I loved the innovative way the shredded lamb shoulder was served in crispy pastry on a bed of Egyptian Labneh with confit tomato. A Pomme puree, Rose water jus, glazed baby carrots and a Chimichurri sauce were the perfect accompaniments to the lamb.

You can also choose from a Cape Malay Butter Curry, Seafood Chowder, Buchu Infused Pork Belly, Venison Mignon and Potato Gnocchi with Seasonal vegetables.

I consider myself a bit of expert on the Chocolate Fondant and I’ll order one whenever I see it on a menu. The reason, aside from the fact that I LOVE this dessert, is because I’ve failed so many times trying to make it. This one was superb! It was perfectly cooked with oozing chocolate inside. The base of Frangelico mascarpone cut through any overwhelming sweetness, while the Rose Petal berry compote added an element of subtle sourness. The flavour of burnt honeycomb finished lent a subtle Smokey flavour that worked exceptionally well with the other flavours.

Also on offer is an Almond cake with Muscadel Poached Pears, the Jan-Ellis Pudding – a sponge cake soaked in a warm creamy sauce with spiced orange chutney vanilla ice cream. The Hertzoggie is perfect for those Sago pudding lovers and is served with a pastry Doily, Amarula Ice cream and an apricot gel in a bed of meringue.

There’s also a cheese selection consisting of local cheese, homemade chutney, Sourdough croute, mustard and grapes.

The cost per person is R750 for a two-course and R850 for a three-course.

To reserve a table contact La Petite Ferme on +27 21 876 3016 or email them at

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