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Remhoogte Aspect Merlot Review

Remhoogte Aspect Merlot Review

Remhoogte Wine Estate is a family-owned winery on the slopes of Simonsberg, which is located in the Western Cape Province of South Africa.

The estate has a long history of winemaking, with vines having been planted as far back as 1812.

A lot of the original vines were uprooted in the 1990s, with the estate relocating from the lower-elevated valleys of the area to better-quality, higher-altitude locations with better soil and drainage.

Today the vines vary in age, from recently planted to nearly 40 years old!

All of the pruning, picking, and sorting is handled by hand by the seven families who live on the property and tend the vineyards.

About half of the fruit is sold off to nearby wineries, with Remhoogte holding on to some of the best fruit to make their own estate-bottled selections.

Remhoogte Aspect Merlot Review

The vineyard used for Aspect Merlot is situated on a higher-elevation plot featuring plenty of shale soil.

This allows the vines to reach deep into the earth, as deep as ten meters, in fact! Penetrating deep into the soil allows the grapes to develop a unique level of complexity and flavor character.

Remhoogte Aspect Merlot Summary

  • Brand: Remhoogte
  • Country: South Africa
  • Region: Stellenbosch
  • Wine Type: Red Wine
  • Varietal: Merlot
  • ABV: 14.5%

Appearance

This wine is a deep garnet in color and readily showcases its weight in the glass.

Big, heavy legs and a dense, inky body give up the fact that you are looking at a powerhouse of a wine before you even take your first sip.

Smell

Wild black cherries, juicy raspberries, and underripe blackberries are the first thing you notice when taking a whiff from the glass.

All of this intense fruit is complimented by lots of rich spice. I get clove and nutmeg alongside dark chocolate, toasty oak, and hints of vanilla.

Thanks to ample alcohol by volume, the aromatics readily lift from the glass to your nose.

The depth and intensity of the wine mean that there is more to enjoy with each sniff you take.

Taste

This is a seriously bold Merlot and really stands out as soon as you take your first sip. It features lots of wild black fruit, brambly berries, and rich vanilla flavors.

There is a tell-tale sign of Merlot here in the form of a black tea flavor, which comes across as a bit tannic and astringent.

The finish is long and robust. After each sip, you will be left with a coating of fine, grainy tannin and plush dark fruit on your tongue, which sits heavily long after you have swallowed the wine itself.

What does Remhoogte Aspect Merlot pair with?

Leaner cuts of meat really help this bottle shine. I personally enjoy it with roast beef, pork tenderloin, and even filet mignon with grilled asparagus.

This wine also works very well with red sauces and puts in some good work when paired with Italian food.

I would recommend going with lasagne, baked ziti, or a good veggie pizza topped with mushrooms and green peppers!

What wines are similar to Remhoogte Aspect Merlot?

If you want to dig into other Merlot options with some heft, I really enjoy The Velvet Devil from Charles Smith in Washington state.

It features a bit more earthiness, a good structure, and a bit more fruit character.

Additionally, I recommend trying a variety of Cabernet Sauvignon or blends which heavily feature Merlot.

Try reaching for a bottle from Saint-Emilion. Saint-Emilion is a region in Bordeaux, France, which is known for producing some of the finest Merlot in the world, which is (typically) blended with some of the other “noble varietals” which Bordeaux is famous for.

Final Thoughts

This is definitely not your mother’s Merlot. People looking for soft, fresh, easy-going Merlot may be a bit disappointed.

But if you are a Cabernet drinker looking to branch out and fall in love with a new varietal, this is definitely the bottle for you.