17th Century Charm at No. 38/800 – Plaisir de Merle, Franschhoek

I am already at No. 38 of 800 now. It is Plaisir de Merle in the Franschhoek Wine valley. #FhkMCC

I have rated this wine farm experience 4 star.


74% 83% 69% 63% 81%

Plaisir de Merle’s Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc is out of this world amazing!

The farm was established in 1693 and has some lovely old fashioned and luxurious charm at their Manor House. The below certificate was signed by Simon van der Stel himself!  From 14 October 1639 – 24 June 1712, he was the first Governor of the Cape Colony (which was the Dutch settlement at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa.) Interesting stuff! I love history!

Signed by Simon van der Stel himself!


  • Wine tasting – their range of wines for R50.
  • Cheese Platter – R80
  • Cellar tour and tasting – R120 per person (booking essential)
  • Manor House Accommodation
  • Weddings
  • Functions

BOOKINGS: It is not necessary to make a booking unless you would like a guided cellar tour or accommodation.

Weekday Tastings: 09:00-18:00 (All year round)
Saturday, Public Holidays and Sundays: 10:00-18:00 (All year round)
Tour times: Prior booking essential
(Closed on: Christmas Day, New Year’s Day & Good Friday)

WHEN TO GO: All year round! Due to the nature of the tasting room, you could go in any type of weather, inside our outside is just as nice.

CHILD/PET FRIENDLY?  I would not recommend this location for the kids or pets.

LOCATION: Situated in Franschhoek about a 45 minute drive from Cape Town. Google Map
OTHER RATINGS:  Check out what others say about this farm on Trip Advisor by CLICKING HERE. 


Click HERE to view the ranking of this farm against others I have already reviewed.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Visit Franschhoek Wine Valley for more information on Wine farms in Franschhoek. 

 Here is my experience:

Selfie! I was travelling without a photographer.

The drive into the farm is quite long but picturesque. As you walk from the parking, the view takes your breath away. First the old Manor House Architecture, then the massive tree and finally the views!

Old Manor House.

Just look at this eye candy of nature!

The gardens are beautifully manicured.

Here is the Manor House as you enter it.

Manour House with incredible views.

We started off with the Grand Brut MCC with winemaker Niel Bester as it is the  lead up to the Franschhoek MCC and Champagne Festival on 4 December. You should go there to try it yourself!

Maryna Strachan (Managing Editor of http://www.wine-extra.co.za/) and Plaisir de Merle Winemaker – Niel Bester.


Made from 35% Chardonnay and 65% Pinot Noir. It is a crisp, dry MCC with good depth from the Chardonnay. It has spent 20 months on the lees and the result is a light, bubbly and elegant MCC which is great as an aperitif.

Plaisir de Merle Grand Brut MCC

If you walk on over to the wine sales, there is a lovely antique looking wine tasting room.

Wine tasting this way!

Just around the corner to the entrance.

Another grand building.

Inside, the tasting cellar is nice and relaxed. I felt like I needed to say “shall we retire to the brandy room for some cigars darling?” – as they used to say in the olden days 🙂 I was delighted that there wasn’t any smoke or brandy hehe, just amazing wine.

Relaxed wine tasting room.

I am a big fan of Malbec so it was only natural that I ordered a glass full 🙂 It has spent 16 months in new and second fill 300L French Oak Barrels. It is a great wine to pair with a good braai or mature cheeses. It will age even better in the bottle for the next 5 years.

Plaisir de Merle 2011 Malbec


Here are some images of the tasting room. Don’t forget to sign the visitors book!


There is a charming outside tasting area too, nicely situated under the trees.

Lekker outside area under the trees.

I absolutely loved the Plaisir de Merle Cabernet Sauvignon! It has spent 12-16 months in French oak barrels. Small amounts of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot were added to round it off. The result is a rich mouth feel, dark berries and rips tannins with a smooth finish. 👌🍷

Plaisir de Merle 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon


We went back to have a look at the Manor House rooms – imagine staying here! They cater for conferences, functions and even weddings! It is grand indeed! Learn more about the guest house offering HERE. 


I bought a few bottles and it was gone within a week – I couldn’t resist. You should definitely try it for yourself.



So which farm is next?




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