The Wow Factor

A tasting with Bruwer Raats from Raats Family Wines, Stellenbosch

We were very fortunate to have the opportunity to taste with Bruwer Raats, from Raats Family Wines based in South Africa's famed Stellenbosch region. Bruwer first founded the Raats estate in 2000 with his brother, Jasper Raats and their father, Jasper Raats Snr who was viticulturist before he passed away in 2009. After their father's passing, their cousin Gavin Bruwer Slabbert, joined the family as viticulturist in 2009 and since then this family estate has flourished.

The mission at Raats Family Wines is to consistently produce Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc of outstanding quality from South Africa and to establish these as international benchmarks.

I loved Bruwer's approach towards his winemaking; 'I drink a lot of my own wines. I make wine the way I like it and not for a market. I put elegance and complexity above richness and boldness'. 


Chenin Blanc 'Original' Raats 2013

Lifted citrus fruit, surprisingly textural mouthfeel after the clean and fresh aromas, a slight spritz and a clean, zippy finish. Really refreshing - I wouldn't say no to a second glass! It's the kind of wine that would be easy to pair when it comes to food matching too as its got a wide flavour profile, but Raats suggest it's a great match with curry or other spicy dishes.


Chenin Blanc 'Old Vine' Raats 2012

Made only from old vines grown in three different vineyards, this wine has delightful ginger, citrus and honeyed pear aromas, whilst the palate is rounded with a stroke of oak. It simply caresses the mouth with a minerally finish. Great with oysters or duck.


Cabernet Franc 'Dolomite' Raats 2012

Dark fruit aromas simply leap out of the glass whilst the palate is brimming with soft, creamy fruit and just a trace of green pepper (characteristic of this grape variety) in the background. Juicy blackcurrant fruit throughout with a minty herbaceous hint. Elegant and supple, this would be a great match with pork.


Red Jasper Raats 2011

A wine that Bruwer makes in memory of his late father Jasper Raats Snr, who was one of the founders and viticulturists of Raats Family Wines. More structured than the previous wine with drier tannins and a peppery attack on the finish. Match this with steak for a real treat.


Cabernet Franc Raats 2010

A lifted nose, very feminine on the palate with elegance, silky tannins and impeccable balance. The soft feel of this wine would make lamb an ideal food pairing.


Mvemve Raats de Compostella 2011

This wine is the result of a collaboration which began in 2004 between Bruwer Raats and Mzokhona Mvemve, the first qualified black winemaker in South Africa. A classical style Bordeaux blend made up of all 5 of the main varieties. Slightly creamy, sweet oak nose, whilst the palate is bigger and richer than all of the previous wines, with oomph of blackberry and black cherry fruit and a chewy dark chocolate finish that cries out for a piece of meat.


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Posted on 28/05/2014
by Danielle
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