The grande dame of Paarl

There are two famous historical landmarks in the heart of Paarl: the Paarl Rock and Grande Roche Hotel at its feet. This small luxury hotel is unlike any other. The atmosphere of a bygone era brings a sense of gracious, unhurried living and boasts a five-star rating.

The Majestic & luxurious Grande Roche Hotel

The Majestic & luxurious Grande Roche Hotel

Relax at The Grande Roche Hotel Spa

The Grande Roche Hotel is a celebrated historical monument set in beautiful gardens and views over Paarl, vineyards and mountains. There is a luxurious treatment area with two treatment rooms, one can accommodate couples and a lounge area for manicures and beauty treatments.

Unwind poolside

Unwind poolside

After a night in one of the terrace suites you will fully relaxed and ready to enjoy the gorgeous surroundings

After a night in one of the terrace suites, you will be fully relaxed and ready to enjoy the gorgeous surroundings

Embedded in history

The hotel’s history dates to the early 1700s with the restored buildings in the Cape vernacular certified as a national monument. The 23ha property at the foot of the majestic Paarl Mountain comprises the hotel with 31 accommodation units, comprising seven rooms and 24 suites.

An extensive refurbishment was done recently with décor by well-known Cape interior designer Francois du Plessis.

The carefully curated terrace suites

The carefully curated terrace suites

Drinks at The Grande Roche Hotel

A new cocktail bar next to the pool is the hub for the after-work slow-down, serving innovative tapas alongside an expanded range of drinks. Brandies get individual treatment as a showcase of the drink’s excellence and to reaffirm the hotel’s hometown as the source of some of the world’s best.

And on this vinous note, the vineyard surrounding the hotel underwent replanting. Wines are made by Bertus Fourie at Under Oaks, the local estate that is the sister property to the hotel.

Afterwork drinks in the perfect setting

Afterwork drinks in the perfect setting

Dine at The Grande Roche Hotel

A restaurant set in the historical manor house under acclaimed chef Kevin Grobler is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. Kevin says, “Cooking is much more than using the best seasonal ingredients and produce.”

Kevin serves hearty dishes with his personal twist and focuses on smoking, fermenting and using everything from nose to tail.

Chef Kevin

Chef Kevin Grobler

Modern with an antique royal touch for the dinner set up

Modern with an antique royal touch for the dinner set up

The perfect breakfast spot after a restful night in the terrace suite

The perfect breakfast spot after a restful night in the terrace suite

An extensive wine list showcases the best the Cape Winelands has to offer.

Wines can be enjoyed from Glen CarlouCreationVriesenhofBouchard Finlayson, WarwickHartenbergVergelegen and Kanonkop.

The Paarl local Olsen Chardonnay and Olsen Pinotage are also on offer and for sweet endings to a good meal, try the Rust en Vrede Donkiesbaai Hooiwijn 2020.

Enjoy a glass of wine from their extensive wine list in the grand lounge

Enjoy a glass of wine from their extensive wine list in the grand lounge

Happy hour anyone?

Happy hour anyone?

Head chef Kevin Grobler’s Prawn and mango – the perfect pairing for the Creation Viognier:

Ingredients:

Per dish

5 prawns

75g bisque and mango cream

50g starch noodles

20g mango atchar

Bisque and mango cream

1kg prawn shells

200g carrots peeled and chopped

200g celery cleaned and chopped

200g onions chopped

100g leeks chopped

1 head garlic chopped

1 cup tomato paste

1L white wine

10L water or fish stock

1kg fresh mango

Method

Caramelize all veg in a stockpot on high heat until golden brown. Add prawn shells and roast for another 5min. Add tomato paste and caramelize more to release the sweetness from the tomatoes and cook out the sour taste.

Deglaze the pot with white wine and burn off all the alcohol. When alcohol is cooked out add water or stock and simmer for at least 8 hours, skimming regularly. Strain through chinoise and allow to cool overnight.

Next morning, skim off any excess fat and warm up again, add mango and blend, then pass thru chinoise and keep refrigerated until needed.

Mango glaze

3 mangoes cubed

2 onions chopped

3 cloves garlic chopped

1 thumb ginger chopped

1 cup sugar

2 dried chillies

1 ½ tsp fermented chilly

Method

Sweet off onion ginger and garlic until translucent. Add sugar, chillies and mangoes and cook until soft. Blend and strain through chinoise.

Potato starch noodle

2 cups potato starch

1 cup boiling water

2 tbsp oil

Method

In a bowl add starch, oil and boiling water leave for a minute and start to make a dough. Knead for 5 to 8 min until the dough is formed. The more you knead the better the dough. Roll through the pasta machine down to number 2, then roll through the linguine roller.

Place in boiling salted water until floating, when the noodles float remove from boiling water and straight into ice water. Remove from ice water and vacuum seal until needed.

Mango atchar

1kg mango

300ml oil

4 tbsp atchar spice

Method

Mix all ingredients and leave for 2 days.

Atchar spice mix

4 tsp garlic powder

2 tbsp cumin powder

1 tbsp ground coriander

3 tbsp masala spice

2 tbsp mustard powder

Method

Place everything in a spice grinder and blend until well combined. Place in airtight container until needed.

Prawn dish from chef Kevin Grobler

Kevin Grobler’s Prawn and mango

Enjoy with a slightly chilled Creation Viognier. Read more about the award-winning Creation winery here.

Peace, tranquility and the ultimate luxury awaits at The Grand Roche Hotel

Peace, tranquility and the ultimate luxury await at The Grand Roche Hotel

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BY Maryke Roberts | April 1, 2022

Maryke Roberts Maryke is an award-winning, Cape Winelands based journalist who has been writing about local and international wine and travel for over three decades. When she's home, her days are almost exclusively concluded with a walk on the beach and a glass of South African fine wine or spirits.

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