Screwed by Ginja
Trip Start May 12, 2009
13Trip End May 24, 2009
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Spier. Amy was excited to go to this winery because they had a cheetah outreach program on the grounds. As we entered the cheetah compound, we first had to pay 2 rand each to go in. Then we came to another area with a cash register. You can pay 90 rand to pet an adult cheetah, or 180 rand to visit a baby cheetah, which we are told includes holding one. The second I heard that, I knew we were about to spend double to see the baby cheetahs (Amy is so predictable). So Amy, JB, and I all pay our 180 rand while Lindsey took pictures from outside the cage (never found out whether she was cheap or scurred). We start to enter the area, but first get directed on all of the rules. The trainer tells us the cheetahs are 8 months old, both male (brothers), and are still a little aggressive. We enter and boy are we suckers. Eight month old cheetahs look almost full grown, and there is definitely no way for us to pick them up and hold them. Not to mention it starts to rain at this point, and the cheetahs are quite restless in the rain. The trainer makes us stay behind him at all times as the cheetahs start to circle us (good thing I signed that waiver so Spier wasn't responsible if I got mauled). The rain finally subsided and the cheetahs lied down long enough for us to pet them and take some pictures. After that the trainer asked us if we were done, he couldn't get us out of there fast enough.
Waterford. This was "Amy's Choice" day so far as the girls really wanted to go to Waterford for their wine and chocolate tasting. The rain started coming down harder at this point, but it wasn't a problem as we were hopping in and out of wineries. The wine at Waterford was pretty good, but nothing exciting compared to the wines we had yesterday. Amy was even disappointed in the chocolate pairings (I guess she was hoping for better chocolate).
Dornier. Most of the best lunch places in the area are at wineries. So we planned a trip to Dornier for lunchtime. We didn't have a reservation, so JB and I decided to try some wines while the girls inquired about food. They came back after they ordered some flatbread and an antipasto plate. Since the restaurant was full, they brought the food out to the wine tasting area where there were 3 tables. We got a table right in front of the fire, had our lunch, and enjoyed wine samples. We could not have asked for a better setup. And the food was great. Who doesn't enjoy a plate of cured meats and bacon flatbread pizza, the bread was amazing as well.
Bellevue was all the way at the other end of the wine country, but it was so highly recommended we thought we had to give it a try (one more person recommended Bellevue today). Plus Bellevue was close to the other highway that goes to Cape Town, so we weren't going completely out of our way. The drive took 20 to 30 minutes (which included a few turn arounds), but we finally got to Bellevue, there was a fork in the road so we decided to stay left and proceeded up the long driveway. We got to a gate and were buzzed in. There was no one around except for a dog, a few chickens, and a few horses. There were also no signs for a tasting room. So figuring we took the wrong fork in the road we head back, but the gate was now locked behind us. You could hear the scary movie music playing in the background as we tried to figure out how to get off the farm.
We got directions to a wine store in hopes of purchasing the Bellevue. The store was just down the road, but were all out of all Bellevue wine except one bottle of the expensive stuff. Sight unseen (or untasted) I decided to just buy the bottle for all of our troubles (and because I had only purchased 3 bottles up to this point and still had room for 1 more). Hopefully it is worth it. Update: Amy and I enjoyed the Bellevue wine recently. It was very good, especially for the price, but not as amazing as I anticipated. I will blame this on the fact that the bottle of wine traveled on 25 hours of non-temperature controlled and unpressurized airplanes.
The Table Bay Hotel. The hotel is huge and is attached to the mall which provided lots of shopping and restaurants. Also next door was the stadium that they are building for the 2010 World Cup. It is pretty far along, but there is still scaffolding and cranes all around it.
#1 rated restaurant in Cape Town according to trip advisor. The food and decor are supposed to be fantastic, but the one knock is that the location is further away and the entrance is in an alley. So we had to take a taxi there. Problem was the taxi driver didn't know where it was. This was our fault since we should have figured that giving the name of the restaurant wasn't good enough, but this place was supposed to be good. So while aimlessly driving around, the taxi driver called up all of his buddies in order to get a location. The best part about was that taxi's in South Africa have a rolling meter. So it is continuously charging us more even though we aren't really driving anywhere. After 20 minutes of driving around, we finally stumble upon the restaurant. JB paid the 70 rand fee and inside we went.
Willoughby & Co. Seafood/sushi is the specialty at this restaurant. Since Cape Town is right near two oceans, the seafood is plentiful. JB goes with his standard fish selection while Lindsey ordered some sushi. Amy and I look at the seafood platter for 2, but instead go with the seafood platter for 1 and some sushi rolls to split. Luckily it was late in the evening since, as the food started to come out, we needed to pull over an extra table to accommodate everything we ordered. The sushi rolls were pretty good, but the seafood platter for 1 was big enough to feed all of us. There were shrimp, crayfish, mussels, and 4 fillets of fish, all on top of rice and french fries. It looked like paella meant for a family (who doesn't like paella?). I was able to eat some of ti, but Amy proved why I married her after eating almost the whole platter by herself, along with sushi. Barely able to stumble back to our rooms, we decide to call it a night (luckily for my wallet, the stores in the mall were all closed).
Where I stayed