Delheim Estate goes wild with mushroom huntings

Friday, 10 May, 2013
Delheim Estate
Want to know a Boletus Edulis from a pine ring and discover the secret world of wild mushrooms? While many fungi fans remain tight lipped about their favourite hunting spot for the elusive shroom, Delheim Wine Estate, just outside Stellenbosch, lifts the lid on this secrecy with its popular Mushroom Week which kicks off with two exclusive foraging expeditions in its own forest on 17 & 18 June.

Avid aficionados can slip on their boots and baskets and join the Sperling family for an enchanting trudge through the forest in search of these rare seasonal delicacies under the guidance of Nora Sperling-Thiel and Gary Goldman aka “The Mushroom Hunter’ – a guru with a keen fungi sense and sharp eye who can spot a camouflaged porcini in no time.

“Over the years mushroom hunting has become somewhat of a family passion. It is all about the mystique and excitement of the season, the timing, the search, and then the ultimate satisfaction…to create a delicious meal from something you have foraged yourself. As a winemaking family we love to live close to nature and besides mushroom are packed with good things like potassium, vitamin D and anti-oxidants” shares Nora, daughter of farm owner Spatz Sperling – a inimitable Cape wine pioneer and co-founder of the Stellenbosch Wine Routes more than 40 years ago. 

After working up an appetite in the forest, foragers will head to Delheim’s Vat Cellar for an exquisite buffet-style lunch indulgence featuring wild and exotic* mushroom dishes, to be enjoyed with a selection of Delheim’s latest vintages and cellar gems.

There are only a few spots available for the Delheim Wild Mushroom Forage (on 17 & 18 June) and tickets cost R250 per person, which include a short-course in mushroom identification – a very important precursor to avoid poisoning and learn the dangers and don’ts when it comes to picking these edible wonders – prior to the forest forage, as well as the languid cellar lunch (beverages excluded).

The hunt starts at 10.30 and pre-bookings for this ex-CEP-tional experience are essential. For more information or to book, contact Delheim at Tel. 021 888 4607; send an email to, or visit                         

Delheim was the first wine estate in the country to serve food almost four decades ago and today its family-friendly Garden Restaurant with its stunning setting remains a firm lunchtime favourite, celebrated for its homely atmosphere and comfort food. Those who miss out on the mushroom foraging experience can still enjoy an array of delicious wild mushroom dishes at the restaurant throughout Delheim’s popular Mushroom Week which runs from 17 until 23 June.

* Wild mushrooms are those such as Boletus edulis, commonly known as the porcini or cep mushroom, which cannot be cultivated by man. They work in conjunction with the environment’s mycorrhizal system, growing in conjunction with the trees. Exotic mushrooms are unusual mushroom varieties that can be cultivated, such as Shiitake, Oyster, Shimeji & Enoki.


17 & 18 June
17 & 18 June

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