Raats Red Jasper

Review by Eric Tansey, CSW,Sommelier                                                                                                         The Raats Red Jasper has very faint aromas of strawberries, raspberries, and a little bacon fat added into the mix. Very sharp and bright acidity with subtle hints of red fruit on the front of the palate.

Wild grown fruits like elderberry and blackberry, along with under ripe raspberry characteristics, try to cut through the acidity but seem to be masked by the hot, ethyl-like, alcoholic finish.

Bright acidity on the back of the palate, followed up by the heat from the alcohol on the finish, make it difficult to find any fruit or complexities in the wine. The lack of tannin gives the wine a rather weak texture in the mouth and makes for a very short finish.

Decanting for an hour and a half helped greatly but the wine was still lacking in balance. I would recommend aging this wine for another five years or so, and I would definitely pair it with food. Cheers!

Tansey’s Blind Rating – 75 Points

Wine Spectator – 88 Points

Wine Advocate – 90 Points

Stephen Tanzers – 90 Points

The Break Down

Dryness Level

Wine Selection – Raats Red Jasper

Producer – Raats Family Wines

Vintage – 2013

Varietal – 85% Cabernet Franc, 5% Malbec, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2.5% Petit Verdot, 2.5% Merlot

Region – Stellenbosch,South Africa

Oak- 18 months in French oak barrels (20% second fill, 30% third fill and 50% fourth fill) and was bottled without fining or filtration.

Alcohol – 14%

Food Paring – Steak, lamb, venison


From The Winery

The 2013 gemstone is very complex, with subtle dark berry fruit on the nose and all the perfume and violets one would expect from 85% Cabernet Franc. The palate surprises with its darkness of fruit: blue and blackberries, blackcurrant, even bramble, intertwined with hints of tobacco and the darkest of chocolate. Complex and structured, it will be difficult to tire of this wine. “This wine should keep you busy.” – Bruwer Raats and Gavin Bruwer.

Ageing potential – 6 to 8 years

Soil Type: Decomposed Dolomite Granite and Table Mountain sandstone, Age of vines: 19 – 26 years.

About the harvest

The 2013 harvest was one of very high quality. The month of January was very warm, but during February and March, we had more moderate temperatures and a little rain, that contributed to slower ripening. The result was the development of healthy grapes, which had great flavour and color

In the cellar

Grapes were hand sorted three times, crushed and left to cold soak on the skins for five days. After fermentation the grapes are basket pressed and allowed to undergo malolactic fermentation in stainless steel tanks and then aged for 18 months before bottling. Neither fined nor filtered.

Wood Aging- 18 months in French Vicard and Mercury oak barrels (20% second, 30% third fill and 50% fourth fill).