Chile keeps pumping out fabulous values in wine

From north to south, Chile has diverse microclimates

From north to south, Chile has diverse microclimates but in the Central Valley’s traditional wine regions, it is mainly temperate and Mediterranean.

Combined with advantageous international exchange rates and lower land and labour cost, most vintages in Chile have an abundance of ripe fruit that allows winemakers to consistently create exceptionally affordable wines of remarkably good quality!

After disappearing from availability for a year the tasty wines of Isla Chilote have returned with slick new labels.  Tough to beat the value in these affordable blends!

The grapes for Isla Chilote White (399634) $7.49 white wine were harvested from selected vineyards in Chile’s Central Valley. This valley is particularly characterized for having clearly defined seasons with cool, rainy winters and warm summers with high daytime temperatures moderated by cool nights.

This white wine has a pale golden yellow appearance. Honeyed melon notes slide into subtle mango and pink grapefruit.

Isla Chilote Red (399657) $7.49 is crafted from grapes that are able to ripen fully thanks to the excellent exposure to the sun, dry summers and a lack of rain at the time of harvest.

Sweet aromas of ripe red fruits, plums and the cassis flavours dominate with notes of mint and vanilla. This is an easy drinking red that wouldn’t mind an hour in the fridge before serving.

The cold maritime Humboldt Current flowing north up the Pacific coast and the fresh breezes that descend from the mountains create a large temperature differential between day and night that allows the wine grapes to grow at a leisurely pace and develop a full range of scent and flavour complexities.

Epica Wines from Viña San Pedro are aimed at young adventurers who want to enjoy life to the fullest, live in the here and now, and keep things fun and simple.

It’s a new brand of young, original and vibrant wines, available in three varieties from Chile: a Red Blend, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc.

A mouth full of tropical fruit flavours with mango and pineapple over kiwi and gooseberry flavours Epica Sauvignon Blanc (775866) $13.99 is a step up from everyday sipping.  Chill down and enjoy!

Made from 90 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon, 5 per cent Carmenere and 5 per cent Syrah,  Epica Red Blend (828590) $13.99 has vivid hues of black plum, intense aromas of ripe red summer fruits and generous flavors of savory cherry and dark cocoa with a long smooth finish.

Sourced from vineyards in the Maipo, Maule and Colchagua Valleys, Epica Cabernet Sauvignon (544072) $13.99. This wine shows the classic character of Cabernet Sauvignon. An intense nose with ripe red and black berry fruit, such as berries and hints of vanilla in this elegant medium bodied red, with smooth ripe tannins.

In 1987 Aurelio Montes, Douglas Murray, Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand got together and set their hearts on creating the finest wines that South America had ever seen.

The four friends knew the potential for quality wines in Chile was waiting to be harvested, and so Viña Montes was born.

Even at the premium level, among similar wines from other Chilean producers, Montes Alpha Chardonnay (390203) $23.65 is a fascinating white wine with a medley of mango, peaches, guava and grapefruit aromas and flavours tantalizing the taste buds over a core of fresh sliced lemons and asparagus. Ten months in French oak adds subtle elements of toast, vanilla, butterscotch and caramel.

Founded in 1998, Ninquén, meaning “Plateau on a Mountain” in a native dialect, became Chile’s first Mountain Vineyard.

This inimitable terroir, located in the heart of Colchagua -Chile’s most renowned premium winemaking region- provides exceptional grape growing conditions for the production of ultra-premium red wines.

From the multi-award winning Montgras, Antu Ninquen Cabernet Sauvignon – Carménère (139295) $24.10 is a lusciously rich red leading with 70 per cent Cabernet for beautiful blackcurrant fruit aromas and flavours.

Spicy, herbal, peppery vegetal notes from 30 per cent Carménère add ‘grip’ and savoury complexities.

California’s iconic Robert Mondavi and Chile’s equally iconic Eduardo Chadwick devised Sena  (413971) $135.09 to be the best that Chile could offer.  An authentic Chilean blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carmenere, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot varieties, it is intense on the nose, with abundant fresh red and black fruit – raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries.  Simply stunning!

 

Reach WineWise by emailing douglas_sloan@yahoo.com

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