Durbanville Hills, the part of the Cape in which I grew up, is considered one of the Cape’s coolest wine regions. Cooling breezes from the Atlantic Ocean and its Benguela Current blow up the valley ameliorating the summer heat in the vineyards. This allows for the slower ripening of the grapes and a chance for them to pack in colour and flavour.
The grapes for the Durbanville Hills Merlot Dry Rosé 2018 are picked from vineyards owned by the 9 shareholder growers, who all farm in the small Durbanville Wine Appellation. The vineyards are low lying and south facing. Soil moisture levels ensure small berries. Small berries have a higher skin to juice ratio giving great colour and flavour. Once harvested, destemmed and crushed, the juice ran into a stainless steel settling tank. The juice was then cool and clear settled over two days before fermentation took place. From here on the wine was treated as a white wine. Post fermentation it was then prepared for bottling.
From a Burgundy shaped bottle, closed with a screw cap. The label is a traditional Durbanville Hills Diamond shaped one, with an etching of the winery with Table Mountain in the background. In the glass, a pale rose tinted pink. The aromas are of a mélange of red berries, strawberries, red currants and the like. The palate is generously fruited with a broad mid-palate and a thin golden thread of acidity running through from entry to the long lingering aftertaste. This is a wine for immediate drinking.
A great sipper as a mid-morning refresher, at lunch or at sundown. It is a great food partner for seafood, summery salads with plump pink prawns and aioli.
The Restaurant at Durbanville Hills Winery, with a magnificent panoramic view of Table Mountain, has a number of delicious dishes on the menu which will perfectly match this wine.
At home, Jane-Anne Hobbs’s Seared Tuna with a Burnt Tomato & Caper Dressing is a great lunch time partner for the Durbanville Hills Merlot Dry Rosé 2018. Click HERE for her recipe.
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