- Nestled within Cape Town’s most popular trail network, on one of its oldest farms, is a delightful coffee shop.
- The Dairy Shed serves great coffee and cake to mountain bikers, in a splendid farm environment.
- You can have beer too, on weekend afternoons, from an adjacent microbrewery.
The Tygerberg mountain bike club is South Africa’s largest and at the centre of its trail network, is The Dairy Shed.
Located on Contermanskloof farm, which dates back to 1706, The Dairy Shed is a coffee shop with provenance: having been converted from a vintage shed. Heritage architecture enthusiasts will marvel at the classic exterior design, which has been respectfully preserved.
What makes The Dairy Shed enormously popular amongst Cape Town mountain bikers, is the quality of its coffee and quaint surroundings. Yusuf is the attentive and skilled barista, serving Deluxe coffee in all the appropriate styles.
Beyond the excellent coffee, there is also another rider’s favourite on offer: carrot cake. And not merely any generic carrot cake. The Dairy Shed serves delicious homemade carrot cake, which is usually richly earned after a challenging ride on the surrounding trails.
The area directly outside the coffee shop has been pedestrianized, which means you don’t have to worry about vehicle traffic ruining the serenity of your surroundings or accidentally driving over a bike.
You can have a brew, too
Contermanskloof’s Robert Starke, responsible for the celebrated mountain bike trails on his family farm, has also added an eponymous microbrewery, to compliment The Dairy Shed. Starke Brews offer a variety of craft beers and there are pizzas on the menu too, ideal substance if you have finished a long weekend ride at midday and need all the carbs.
Similar to The Dairy Shed, this microbrewery is in a pleasantly preserved historic farm building, with its entrance shaded by a magnificent Natal fig (‘Mutuba’) tree.
With three of the Tygerberg mountain bike club’s trail corridors linking to Contermanskloof, it is the choice venue for many Cape Town mountain bikers to meet, for a weekend ride. The farm offers a diversity of riding, from flowing singletrack to extreme downhill trails.
Its outstanding location, secure parking and the presence of both The Dairy Shed and Starke Brews allow for a great post-ride family and friend’s outing at Contermanskloof. There is a lush lawn too, which has been dedicated as a kiddie play area.
Although the coffee, carrot cake, beer and pizza on offer are premium, the environment remains charmingly rustic and relaxed. Riders can park their bikes anywhere without bother.
No discussion of The Dairy Shed or Contermanskloof is complete, without mentioning Stella. The farm’s resident Rottweiler is wonderfully friendly and personable, but please refrain from feeding her, as a multitude of Saturday morning carrot cake bits, turn Stella’s diet to ruin.
As a working farm with its own dogs, Contermanskloof is most welcoming of human visitors, but you’ll have to leave the pets at home.