It was a cold and somewhat wet winters afternoon and were heading back to Port Elizabeth after a very enjoyable pre-cold front weekend in The Crags. Driving along the N2, most people make their comfort and coffee / food stop at Storms River Bridge. I haven't done that for a number of years now Not since discovering the Oudebosch Farmstall about 30 km east of the bridge. We took the Kareedouw / Eersterivier offramp from the N2 and turned right towards the coastline. Oudebosch lies about 400 meters down the road and Ginger the cat welcomed us along with a crackling fire and the aroma of coffee hanging in the restaurant.
We opted to grab a table close to the small fireplace in the restaurant, but not before long the built in braai was lit as well. Darn, suddenly I was sorry we didn't grab the couches on that side.
There is no way I was going to get away with only ordering coffee for the Damselfly and I and as soon as we walked in Drama Princess uttered the wallet dreaded "I'm hungry". It was lunch time after all. What was on the menu? Roosterkoek with mince for me; bacon, egg and cheese roosterkoek for the Damselfly; burger and chips for Chaos Boy and a jam and cheese roosterkoek with a milkshake for Drama Princess. Do you get the roosterkoek pattern? It wasn't just because we like roosterkoek. Oudebosch is famous for it's roosterkoek. That's why.
Oudebosch is more than just a coffee shop and restaurant. It also has a curio shop as well as a small supermarket. The curio shop carries everything from beaded animals and wooden figurines to jams, jewelry and jolly ol' South African wines so there are no excuse to go home from your holiday empty handed without a gift for grandma or the neighbours who's always asking what you're going to bring her. The supermarket doesn't just cater for the surrounding farming community but also the holiday makers staying in nearby Eersterivier. Plus it's ideal to stock up on eats and drinks for the drive ahead.
More and more people are starting to discover Oudebosch and it's not just thanks to their great offering but also the fact that owner Dewald Niemann is always busy marketing or networking somewhere when he's not sweating over paperwork in the office. Proof of this is the extensive addition being put onto the back of the farmstall at the moment allowing them to cater for bus groups looking for a authentic place to stop while on tour. I got him to stop long enough though for a quick chat and to take the picture of us (and Ginger) at the Oudebosch selfie frame outside. So next time you head through the Tsitsikamma, why do you even want to stop at a franchise store to get a coffee and something to eat? Oudebosch and Ginger is calling your name instead.
A quick detour from the N2 between Nanaga and Grahamstown to Kenton-on-Sea took me through the village of Salem for the first time in ages last week. I didn't have time to explore much but I did stop for a quick photo of the front of the church while parked next to the cricket field.
Salem was founded by the Sephton party who formed part of the 1820 British Settlers who settled in this district. The name comes from the bible and means "peace" with the local application referring to a reconciliation between sects.
The original church was built with mud blocks and thatch and was consecrated in 1824. This was replaced by a stone structure in 1832 and it was this building that served as refuge for women and children during the Frontier Wars.
You know when you've experienced something that you just want to share over and over again? My Wild Coast trip was like that (heck, sometimes I feel every trip I go on is like that) and I wish I could transport you all to the day I spend at Wavecrest Hotel and getting up to a perfect windless morning. Getting up just before sunset with not a ripple on the lagoon. Ahhh, absolute bliss.
Have you ever wondered where Coffee Bay got its name from? Its not like the Wild Coast is a coffee growing area and beer is a lot more popular around there than coffee anyway.
Way back in 1893 on a...
this part of the story I don't know so I will give you a couple of options
1. dark stormy night
2. quiet fog covered morning
3. bright sunshine day (with the sun shining in the captain's eyes)
... a cargo ship with a load of coffee beans ran aground somewhere around the area. The coffee beans washed up on the beach and surrounding coastline and some of them took root and started growing. Unfortunately the salty soil and conditions is totally wrong for coffee and not much came of it. The name did stick though.
The photo of the Coffee Bay coastline was taken from my room at Ocean View Hotel during a recent visit.