The 2017 Best of Bot takes place on the 22nd of April and is an annual highlight of the Barrels & Beards winelands showcase in Bot River. The highest bidders will take home some of the coolest, most unusual and desirable items, all for a worthy cause.  Funds raised at the Best of Bot Auction will be used where they are needed the most: to improve the lives of children through various school-level educational projects in the region.

“Barrels & Beards is a great celebration. At the same time, it’s an opportunity to build our community where education is an absolute priority,” says Kobie Viljoen, Chairperson of the Bot River Vineyards Association.

Loud and proud Bot River items to go under the hammer will be wines, one-on-one interactions with winemakers, farm tours and even unusual experiences like a honey-and-wine pairing.

The most astute bidders will walk away with some truly exceptional items:

  • Five-star wines are a rare breed; at 2017 Best of Bot, you could be the winner of an entire case!
  • As a knowledgeable wine-lover, you know how vintage of the same wine can differ; now, you’ll be able to host your own vertical tasting should you take the bid for six vintages of a champion wine among the lots.
  • Bot River is home to a few of what are arguably the country’s most memorable restaurants, which you’ll get to try if you’re able snap them up;
  • Meat-lovers will already know the reputation of Overberg lamb, so it’ll be a hot pursuit on the auction floor when auctioneer serves up primo meat by Western Cape 2016 Farmer of the year Josias le Roux; and,
  • There’s nothing quite like a weekend away in Bot River, especially if you made the winning bid on a stay at a luxury property for a good cause.

The auctioneer’s clipboard is stacked with a list of items generously donated by Bot River superstar wineries Luddite, Beaumont, Goedvertrouw, Rivendell, Barton, Wildekrans, Gabrielskloof, Genevieve MCC, Villion Family Wines and Thorne & Daughters.

The Best of Bot auction forms part of a day now famed for its great mirth and joviality. There’s the Botriviera dinner – a feast of food of the valley; and, the infamous Beard Parade too.

This celebration of the humble beard near the conclusion of the annual grape harvest, began by quite accident.  During harvest, there’s little time for shaving; all it took from there was for one person to raise a challenge: who’s the hairiest of them all?

Now, winemakers of this close-knit wine region deliberately undertake a self-imposed shaving ban during the harvest period and gave rise to the festival of Barrels & Beards.

“Bot River is famous internationally for its community of laid-back, free-thinkers who are responsible for some of South Africa’s most outstanding wines. Barrels & Beards is about sharing this culture and hospitality,” says Bot River Wine Route co-ordinator Melissa Nelsen.

Barrels & Beards welcomes visitors to a dinner spread and to taste wines right from the latest vintage straight from the barrel during the festivity hosted once more on the hillside grounds of Barton Vineyards.

The 2017 Bot River Barrels & Beards showcase will take place on Saturday, 22 April at 5pm at R450 per adult. Tickets are available at For enquiries and pre-bookings contact Wilmari Geyer, email: and mobile: 084 231 8930.

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