Written by: napr on: April 20, 2016,
in the category: Travel
Keri Bainborough is originally from KZN but has been living in the Stellenbosch winelands since 2015, where her husband owns and runs a restaurant and guesthouse (and she helps out!).
She is a writer by trade, and pens beautiful posts on her blog, We Are The Wildflowers.
She is also very passionate about food, wine, travel and being vegan.
Tell us a little bit about your recently launched restaurant, Nomad:
Nomad was born out of a need – I’m vegan and my husband is not and we always battle to find nice restaurants that we can both eat, drink and enjoy ourselves at. Sure, you can eat at really fancy wine farms and posh restaurants, where the chefs are happy to make you vegan options if you book in advance (and pay a pretty penny for the privilege), but my goodness, we thought how nice would it be to go to a restaurant that has actual vegan starters, mains, desserts, pizzas and burgers on the menu – all the time? At Nomad, we offer this choice. Both vegans and omnivores (omnis) can eat together here and have a good time safe in the knowledge that both their needs are being met. Our wine list also states which wines are vegan and which aren’t. We also aim to make really yummy vegan options – so that omnis will enjoy them and order them for themselves too. Our vegan curry and vegan cheesecake has proven popular amongst omnivores, which is awesome! Every vegan meal chosen over an omni one makes a difference to the health of our planet, ourselves and the welfare of animals.
And we believe there’s the option to sleepover too?
Yes, there is a nine room guesthouse on the property called Vine, which we’re upgrading and renovating over the quiet winter season. We’re hoping to start the summer season this year with three new rooms. It’s quite a process, as the property was horribly run-down and out-of-date when we bought it, but we are embracing the challenges that come with a fixer-upper!
What are the top five things you recommend your guests do and see while visiting Stellenbosch?
Must-visit wine estate?
Muratie. The history and charm behind this little cellar is just heartwarming. I love that it is what it is – no big fancy restaurant and elaborate designer décor; the place has remained the same for years… the tasting room has the cobwebs to prove it! Muratie is about the story of the farm and the making and tasting of the wine, both of which are absolutely beautiful and special.
Stellenbosch’s best-kept secret?
I’m not sure if it’s much of a secret, but there’s a fabulous little shop called Quagga Rare Books and Arts in the De Wet Centre in town, which is filled with beautiful antiquarian first editions, maps, botanicals and water-colour paintings. I can spend hours browsing in there!
You’re originally from KZN – what do you miss most about home?
My family and a good summer afternoon thunderstorm.
Favourite hotel in KZN?
Fordoun Hotel and Spa. The rooms are all individually themed and beautifully decorated and the surroundings are the best in the Midlands – serene and tranquil. A relaxing session in the flotation tank (built in an old farm silo) is a must!
One place you’d love to spend a night in Cape Town?
Definitely Ellerman House or, of course, The Mount Nelson – just to say I did!
If you’re impressing overseas guests, you’d take them for dinner at…?
Nomad, of course! I might be slightly biased.
Next destination on your bucket-list?
We’re off to the USA in August; I’m so excited to tick off so many things on our bucket lists, from New York to the Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, Washington DC and San Francisco. I’m also beyond excited to try out all the vegan eateries and options in the US – hoping to come back inspired!
Top 3 lifestyle bloggers / influencers to follow on social media?
@sanellevosloo - we randomly met in real life before we were friends on social media. I mean, how strange! I fell in love with her german shepherd pup at Raw & Roxy in Woodstock and posted a pic of him on my IG account. A mutual friend then tagged her and we’ve been following each other ever since. I adore how Sanelle and her fiancé simply pack up their (rather large) dog and go exploring the South African countryside! It’s very refreshing to your usual paid travel influencers who regurgitate the same in-vogue hotel/restaurant over the same period.
@vutheara – his IG feed is just breath-taking – a real visual feast. And he is based in Paris, which is pretty much my most favourite city in the whole world.
@goodeatings – I’ve just recently discovered Malin’s blog and IG feed and I’m obsessed! Her vlogs are so beautifully curated and informative and her voice is so calm and serene, I could listen to her all day!
Your top travel tip:
If you can’t fit it into hand luggage, don’t take it. Lugging a massive suitcase around will ruin your trip – trust me, I’ve done it and have the broken suitcase to prove it.
Keep up with Keri:
Facebook: We Are The Wildflowers
Blog: We Are The Wildflowers – www.wearethewildflowers.co.za