Take note, carnivores: make your way to Hoghouse at Spier’s historical Jonkershuis for meaty fare that will leave you longing for more. Slow-cooked, smoky and succulent. Kick off your meal with a variety of starters, ranging from a bread tray featuring bone marrow butter, truffle cream cheese and olives to super spicy buffalo wings. We tuck into perfectly plump and rich arancini, sporting a crisp outside. The combination of stringy cheese and risotto, with added wild mushrooms for an umami kick, hit the spot. The bachalhau fish fritters, served with curry aioli, is an equally flavourful, but lighter alternative.
For mains, a selection of meats served by the 100 grams: burnt beef ends and pulled lamb shoulder, including a brisket bun and buttermilk fried chicken that get the thumbs up instantly. The beef and lamb are juicy and tender with a smoky flavour. The brisket on the bun is pull-apart tender, topped off boerenkaas, caramelised onions and pickles for crunch. The sides are stars in their own right. Try the glorious roasted cauliflower; married with hummus, sumac red onion, labneh, za’atar and sultanas, the harrissa roasted carrots or go for gold with the coal-roasted sweet potato.
Pork lovers will be satisfied with the pork spare ribs, pork belly and miso pork neck – or a combination of the pork belly and neck on a bun, served with coriander and pickled carrots.
A selection of freshly squeezed juices, or choose from a variety of craft beers on tap, wines, cocktails or spirits.
The service is stellar with a quick turnaround time for food.
The outside setting on the terrace is perfect for lunch on a sunny day, while taking in breathtaking views of greenery, mountains and heritage architecture. It’s also a great spot to dine with the family, with kid-friendly facilities.
Satisfy your sweet tooth with a visit to the resident bakery for freshly baked treats.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.
Acclaimed chef, PJ Vadas, runs the Hoghouse group of brewery and barbeque in Ndabeni and the bakery and café at Spier Wine Estate. Traces of the American-style grill served at the brewery can be found on the bakery menu, where you can enjoy a leisurely breakfast or lunch outdoors in the summer under the oak tree, on the terrace, or near one of the crackling fireplaces indoors in winter.
Under the gables of the historic restored Jonkerhuis (built in 1778), enjoy a cuppa and a breakfast of brioche French toast or something more substantial, like a boiled duck egg with relish, the smoked brisket with toasted focaccia or the barbequed pulled pork served with a poached egg and beans. For lunch, start with the bread board with truffle spread and butter or a charcuterie board from Neil Jewel (from Môreson). The quinoa bowl with chickpeas and harissa and the cauliflower risotto with goat’s cheese will satisfy vegetarians and the classic Reuben sandwich and pulled pork bun that comes with a splendid piccalilli, are hearty choices. There’s a range of seasonal fish on the menu, too, and no visit is complete without a flaky pasteis de nata – a Portuguese custard tart.
Order a fresh ale on tap from the brewery, or a flight of three to sample the range, with names like Hogwash and Roadhog. There’s even a flight of juices if you take your greens seriously, and a buffalo milk smoothie with blueberries and matcha to perk you up. A small and tight wine and cocktail selection has you well covered.
Excellent service with generous, helpful wait staff.
Sitting under the large oak tree is a summer-time pleasure to be savoured with friends and family. While kids are welcome to romp around, the atmosphere is tranquil and will leave you longing for the countryside.
Don’t forget to visit the artisinal bakery and take home a beautiful loaf, pastries or desserts. You’ll also find a range of homemade jams, locally-made kitchen items like tea towels and rolling pins.
Eat Out reviewers dine anonymously and pay for their meals in full. Click here to read our editorial policy.
Chef PJ Vadas has just opened a craft bakery and café at Spier in the Stellenbosch Winelands, after starting Hog House
Brewing Company and a barbecue-style restaurant in the industrial Cape Town suburb of Ndabeni.
Whereas Hog House in Ndabeni is unashamedly meat-driven, the centre of PJ Vadas’s new place at Spier is its spanking new bakery. There are baguettes and sourdoughs to make your mouth water and pastries in the French manner, macarons, crème brûlées in a pastry shell, and cute little fruit tarts just begging to be photographed.
Lunch brings out superb hand-chopped steak tartare with multicoloured baby beets and creamy horseradish, and a man-sized pulled pork bun with spicy pineapple kimchi and coriander served with deep-fried baby potatoes.
Summer offerings will include generous fresh salads from the Spier farm, sustainable fish with fennel, braised lettuce and a potato and mussel velouté, and rich quiches. The smoked meats are brought from the Ndabeni set-up and baked goodies travel in the opposite direction – clever. The menu is seasonal.
The well-known Spier wines (only) at very good prices and draught beer from Hog House Brewing Company in Ndabeni—no BYO.
Attentive and knowledgeable – a pleasure.
The open terrace in front of the venerable Jonkershuis is the setting, overlooking the lawns where Moyo used to be. A most delightful place to spend time eating great food and drinking wine or beer, whereas the cool interior will be much sought-after when the fierce heat of summer gets too much.
Obviously, take home some delicious baked goodies. Signage is not yet complete, so take a left as you enter Spier –you can’t miss it. No bookings.
Popped in unannounced for lunch, and was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the food. (I'd give it 4.5 out of 5 - but that's not possible). At first glance I struggled with the menu - I was hoping for ribs, or something similar. In the end, I plumped for steak tartare - which turned out to be spectacular. The meat was beautiful, clean and ruby red, and it was served very cleverly with sultanas which had been soaked in bourbon. For pud, I can recommend the salted caramel tart. The other things we tried were a bit too pastry-heavy (creme brûlée is perfect sans pastry in my opinion - no need to complicate!) Oh, and something which was noticably good: the service. Staff were really on it, and there were several people who helped us without being asked. Evidently there's been good training - or they're geared for busier days.