Stellenbosch Summer News & Reviews

With our News and Reviews, we discover new ventures, innovative products and creative endeavours that have Stellenbosch abuzz this summer.

HŌSEKI at Delaire Graff

HŌSEKI, the extraordinary new Japanese restaurant that perfectly embodies the confidence and skill of head chef Virgil Kahn, opened its doors in October at Delaire Graff Estate. Translated from Japanese, hŌseki means ‘jewel’, a tribute to Delaire Graff’s owner and renowned diamantaire, Laurence Graff OBE. The menu offers patrons contemporary cuisine imbued with the creative flair for which Virgil is renowned.

Dishes are crafted to be shared at the table and served in a style honouring Japanese culture and customs.

The Pottery

A funky, fresh creative cafe breathes new life into socialising! The Pottery brings a blend of timeless retail with South Africa’s leading handmade dinnerware manufacturer, Wonki Ware, and a creative cafe culture.

The Pottery invites you to enjoy a creative adventure by designing your very own Wonki Ware plate. Artists of all ages and abilities can choose from the selection of ceramic items and get creative with paints and brushes. While you paint, fresh meals and drinks from the cafe’s healthy menu are served in the cool courtyard, or on the deck while you soak up the sun’s rays.

Situated on the corner of Ryneveld and Dorp streets, The Pottery promises to be a perfect rendezvous for catch-ups, date nights and so much more as you release your inner artist and feel the stresses of daily life melt away with each brush stroke.


An unprecedented attraction that brings together artistry, ancient geology and engineering, Earthbox is a unique immersive installation designed to offer the public an engaging journey into the earth, travelling back through layers of time to experience the world beneath our feet.

A global first, the installation is located on Lourensford Wine Estate in Somerset West and is open to the public from 1 November 2023 until 1 May 2024. Visitors to Earthbox will descend into a 24m-long underground chamber that takes them 5m below the surface and just above ground that is between 550 and 560 million years old.

This excavated experience allows them to escape the noise and heat of a busy summer and find quiet and awe by journeying into the earth. Raw earth walls and floors bring visitors close to the textures, scent and gentle sensory experience of a silent world and gives them a glimpse of what time has etched into the walls over millions of years.

The project is the first by international experiential studio The Dream Commission, which is committed to topping up the current global quota of creativity and curiosity through exciting and unusual once-off projects.

‘Kanniedood’ deur Joha van Dyk

’n Nagraadse student aan die Universiteit van Stellenbosch, Joha van Dyk, het onlangs haar derde roman vrygestel – Kanniedood.

Oor die boek: Dis die Branderjaers se matriekjaar en Ben ‘Kannie’ Palmer was van plan om sy kop laag te hou. Maar dinge loop van die begin af vir hom skeef. ’n Ou bendeleier is terug in Breekwater en Ben en sy suster Kalla word gekonfronteer met ’n nalatenskap waarvoor hulle nooit gevra het nie. En ’n oorlog wat die gemeenskap in chaos dompel. Kalla kon nog nooit die verlede afskud nie. Die nag toe sy in Niemandsland aangeval is, het haar lewe verander. Nou het sy dalk ’n kans om dinge reg te stel. Om seker te maak daar is nie nog ’n slagoffer nie. Al moet sy alles om haar afbrand.

In 2020, het Joha haar debuutroman Branderjaer vrygestel. Dié boek was die eerste boek in die Branderjaer-saga. In 2022, het sy die tweede boek Vuurvreter vrygestel. Kanniedood is die derde en nuutste boek in die saga.

A1 Fruit Water

A refreshingly different take on sparkling water, A1 Fruit Water is extracted straight from South African fruit, in South Africa, and it’s healthy, tasty and refreshing. It comes in three flavours – mandarin, lemon and grapefruit – and is sugar free with no calories, sweeteners or preservatives.

The water is a by-product of making South African juice, so the impact of its production is low.

A1 Fruit Water ensures that all involved in the process, from farm to can, get a fair deal. The company works with farming partners who are located in the subtropical mango- and citrus-producing region of Hoedspruit in the north of South Africa. Every can of A1 Fruit Water bought supports the country’s economy – the farmers and factories, drivers and distributors – so every purchase makes a real difference.
A1 Fruit Water is available at selected Pick n Pay and Spar stores, as well as from takealot.com.


Rykaart’s at Longridge Wine Estate is a family-owned restaurant run by Alex and Ella Rykaart. Situated at the foot of the Helderberg mountains, with breathtaking views of the Cape Peninsula and Table Mountain, Rykaart’s offers a set three-course family-style dining experience inspired by the beautiful produce of this biodynamic farm.

Wholesome food and exceptional service have always been close to Alex and Ella’s hearts. Having both worked in some of the top restaurants and hospitality establishments in the Cape Winelands, they took the leap and opened their own restaurant in the heart of their home town, Stellenbosch, in 2021. The couple enjoyed much success and were awarded a star at the Eat Out Woolworths restaurant awards in their first year. When the opportunity for growth and the option to introduce a new concept arose, they made the decision to move, with baby Lara, to Longridge Wine Estate.

“We are excited to welcome our regular diners and new guests to our home on Longridge Wine Estate,” they say. “We are proud to serve family-style meals paired with beautiful wines, making this a very special culinary experience.”


Oxygen is a unique and essential chemical element – with it you have life; without it, life as we know it cannot exist. The humble farming town of Patensie in the Eastern Cape is where the story of (di)Oxygin begins, where Lindie Cillié, founder of (di)Oxygin, grew up with her family of six siblings, and where she learnt about life, citrus, sacrifice and, above all, love.

The Covid-19 pandemic took a toll on the community of Patensie and on Lindie, who lost both her parents to the virus only five days apart. “They literally died due to a lack of oxygen. But they left a legacy that will never be forgotten, both locally and around the world,” she says. “They were in so many ways the oxygen of the community, providing assistance and encouragement, and sharing their many talents with all those whose paths they crossed – essentially breathing life into everything and everyone in their lives.”

This is the basis of the inspiration for the spirit apéritif (di)Oxygin, in which Lindie combines citrus, her father’s lifelong passion, and the renowned spekboom or ‘tree of wonder’. Not only is the spekboom a carbon sponge that reduces our carbon footprint, it also produces oxygen, the ultimate source of life.

With (di)Oxygin, Lindie hopes to ensure that the spekboom gets propagated far and wide in order to increase global oxygen levels. This will have the combined effect of both protecting our planet and decreasing
the devastating effects of global warming, while also honouring those who lost their lives due to Covid-19.

Punch for Pink

Breast cancer survivors strutted their glorious stuff on the pink carpet at the Punch for Pink Fashion Show that took place at Blaauwklippen Wine Estate during the 20th celebration year of Kamers/Makers. The fashion show raised funds for Reach for Recovery, South Africa’s oldest breast cancer organisation, and celebrated breast cancer survivors in the best way possible.

Beautiful and courageous models lit up the runway as they celebrated their survival and their femininity. The brilliance of local designers who form part of Kamers/Makers was evident in their clothes, jewellery and accessories that were donated to be worn by the models.

Punch for Pink is a call to action, unity and hope, while celebrating the beauty of being a woman!