FROM blushers to dyeballs and laughing gyms to deceivers – that’s the fungus in store, and more, now that the splendid hunt for wild mushrooms at Delheim Estate in Stellenbosch is back.
Re-emerging from the dark like the delicious forest treats, the renowned, family-owned winery once again presents its expert tutored excursions during the season’s annual short window. If you’re keen to participate, you’ll have to jump, but not only because mushrooms only appear for a short time after the winter’s first rains, when conditions are just right; it’s because the Delheim Wild Mushroom Forage will take place for members of the public on one day only – the public holiday of 16 June (Youth Day).
If you miss it, however, there’s another way. An additional day is planned for 2 July, but it’s reserved for members of the estate’s wine club. If you’re not a member already, then now’s the time to sign up. The great news for this year is that signed-up foragers will again learn at hand of the host duo that has made this a highlight of the Cape winelands for 15 years. Delheim’s Nora Thiel was raised in a home that regularly foraged for mushrooms and she’ll be joined by author and specialist Gary Goldman. Both are master mycophiles, adept in the art of finding the fungi!
Participating groups have been limited to just 30 people, so an intimate and first-hand experience in this pop-up event is assured. Each ticket includes the presentation about foraging and mushroom varieties, which covers those to be avoided and those that are edible; the forage excursion into Delheim’s forest; and, a three-course, mushroom-inspired lunch served with wines from the estate.
Apart from the quality of tuition and fun experience overall, the Delheim Wild Mushroom Forage is supremely popular for the forest where the toadstools sprout. It is here that the fungus thrives undisturbed, weaving its threads beneath the forest floor, transforming organic matter into healthy soil. Edible mushrooms themselves are often linked with health benefits and some cultures even claim they possess a supernatural aura. Whatever their magic, many specimens are sumptuous as a dish, with some of the finest examples located at Delheim.
Whether you’re seeking vroom through ‘shrooms or just out for a fun(gi) experience, it’s time to venture out with the pixies and sprites. It’s time to head for Delheim.
- Cost: R650 per person.
- Bookings: Required, email [email protected] to reserve your spot.
- Bring: A basket, pocket-knife, walking boots and rain jacket.
- Age-limit: No under 18s.
About the Delheim Wine Club
In addition to receiving preferential treatment at events such as the wild mushroom forage this year, members of Delheim’s Wine Club also receive great access to wine. This includes a 20% discount on specified wines; and a free tasting at the farm (terms and conditions apply). For more information and to sign up, click here.
For more information about Delheim Estate in general, click here or contact [email protected] or 021 888 4600. Delheim Estate is in the Simonsberg sub-region of the Stellenbosch Wine Routes, on the Knorhoek Road, off the R44. Also find Delheim on Facebook, Twitter @Delheim and Instagram @delheimwines.
IMPORTANT: The appearance of wild mushrooms depends completely on natural phenomena that are impossible to forecast with absolute accuracy. Although the Delheim events take place during the high season for wild mushrooms, the estate cannot guarantee the appearance of mushrooms on the day.