This year, the day of ‘love’ which is known as Valentine’s Day, fell on a Saturday and I for one, was filled with joy at the thought, as I had heard that Watershed was playing a valentine’s gig at Cascade Manor in the picturesque town of Paarl –home to some of the finest Winelands in our country.
Let me paint the picture, of what lay ahead for the night, so to speak.
A night’s accommodation which included a four course dinner by Frank Marks (renowned Chef), with wine pairing and VIP golden circle tickets to watch Watershed!! To say I was a tad excited, would be an understatement.
Frank Marks – Frank went to cooking school at- wait for it……… ‘Sillwood’ and there after worked at ‘La Colombe’ for 2 years. Frank then went on to work at The Test Kitchen. He went to London to work for Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck and at ‘Dinner By Heston’ and eventually returned to South Africa to work for the Pot Luck Club and at The Test Kitchen. Frank has now opened his own restaurant, namely Borage.
Close friends had decided to join us for the evening and what better way to break bread and enjoy a romantic evening.
Driving up to the Manor conjured up images in my mind of a magical fairyland with a cascading waterfall. The majestic Klein Drakenstein Mountains lights up the sky as the backdrop to the Manor. Upon arrival, I could see that the magical idea was to become a reality. Cascade Manor did not disappoint in any way.
After booking into one of the fifteen beautifully decorated rooms which the Manor offers, we entered the dining terrace that overlooks a valley of trees and hills, sprawling lawn and pool area in front of us. T the right side of the premises a sandy pathway lined with olive trees leads you up to the captivating waterfall – I’m guessing the name ‘cascade’ was inspired by this beauty. A sense of peace surrounded my soul, as I filled my eyes with every inch of glory that is nature itself.
We ordered a tasty lunch off the lunch menu, which is very reasonably priced and beautifully presented. After lunch we enjoyed a quick nap before getting ready for the night of all nights. I was awoken to the sounds of music playing.
Peeping out from behind the curtain, I noticed an opening band ‘wooing’ the audience with their sound, so to speak. Upon doing a little research, I established the band fly under the banner ‘Triveno Smith Music’ – they played covers to perfection.
As we entered the terrace the tables had been beautifully laid out with glassware and crisp white linen – fine dining was the order of the night. The setting was as perfect as could be expected for an unforgettable evening. As I glanced out over the valley I saw the lawn spread out like a thick carpet and couples had already booked their picnic spot for the evening. Bales of hay were scattered around and the delightful sound of children’s giggles could be heard all around us. The children were having a great time on the jungle gym and those on the trampoline were jumping up and down to the beat of the music.
We were then approached by our waiter, who may I add was ‘oh so charming’. He gave us a sneak overview of what we were to expect from our dinner and wine pairing. My mouth literally watered at the thought of it all.
The dinner was truly as scrumptious and delicious as the photos reveal.
After dessert and the opening act, I spotted the boys from Watershed as they took to the stage. An intense feeling of exhilaration filled me, as this was the moment I was waiting for. It was to be my third time watching the band and I knew that the audience was in for an experience that would live in their hearts and minds long after the night had ended.
Watershed’s music captivates your mind and soul and you walk away with a sense of bewilderment at the pure mystery of it all. Timeless, classic and elegant are three words that are synonymous with Watershed.
Near the end of the evening, Craig thanked everyone for coming through and the band left the stage – disappointment filled me, but a couple of minutes there after they returned with smiles filling their faces and proceeded to play a few more of their incredible songs – the crowd lapped them up from beginning to end. I could share pages and pages of all their achievements to date; the list goes on and on. Watershed continues to take the country and world by storm.
To read previous blogs I have written about the band, find them here:
To find out more about Watershed or find them in your area, check them out on Facebook:-
Watch them on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a27IgsQckTI
Their personal page links:-
Craig Hinds (Vocals, Piano, Acoustic guitar); https://www.facebook.com/craig.hinds.39?fref=ts
Howie Combrink (Drums)
James Sunney (Bass)
Gideon Botes (Electric and Acoustic Guitar)
The setting was perfect and an unforgettable night was had by all. Friendship, music, good food, relaxation and last, but certainly not least, love, was what this day encapsulated in every sense of the word.
Cascade Manor managed to bring it all together – ambience and a truly ‘soulful’ evening. Big thanks!