Wine & Travel

Snooth User: kboss00

Chilean buried treasure

Posted by kboss00, Jun 8, 2014.

just got back from a biz trip to chile and my hosts sent me to Santa Rita vineyards outside Santiago expecting to find many entry level varietals w/o much charater or interest. i thought i'd find some tasty Carmenere at low prices which or course is available. i was surprised and embarassed not to have known the history of these great vineyards. i found elegance and depth in a single varietal Petite Syrah, Pinot Noir from the coast with a foundation of black cherry giving way to tart raspberry and allspice fininshing clean and long. i ended my tasting with winemaker of the year, Andres Ilabaca,sampling the 2010 Casa Real, his prized label. this Cab is hand picked, further selected on the sorting line and then barrel selected by the wine maker for this bottling. the glass delivered lusciuos ripe fruit, silky mouth feel, soft penetrating tannins that kept on giving in this classic brew. 14 mo new french oak. drink it now or hold for the next generation. love to try this blind vs. $75-100 CA cabs.


Reply by JenniferT, Jun 8, 2014.

Welcome! Interesting account of your experience. I don't know much about Chilean wine but I'm sure you'll find lots of people here who do.

I must say, I was quite happy to see that your post wasn't actually about some scheme to buy into some fictitious treasure hunt.  :)

Reply by kboss00, Jun 8, 2014.

I hope snooth filters out the come-ons for everyone's sake.

Reply by dvogler, Jun 8, 2014.

Haha,,Jen, aren't you a geologist?  ;)

Welcome KBoss,

I was in Brazil about 18 months ago and went to a wine shop (subterranean to help with temperature) and a lot of their stuff was Chilean.  It was really good.  I brought back four bottles to Canada. Still have a big red blend that was, in my friend's opinion, their best, and a Syrah that I thought was as good or better.  Of course they aren't available in here, that I've ever seen.  In fact, there's little really good Chilean stuff here.

Besides the wine on the trip, what do you typically enjoy?

Reply by kboss00, Jun 8, 2014.

 i'm a regular pinot and cab drinker mainly oregon some WallaWalla and CA. among them trisaetum and soter wineries in willamette valley and corison and laurel glen in napa are some i keep on hand. i drink a lot of italian and spanish wines of all sorts; i like priorat, reds and whites from lake garda and earthy wines from basilicata. i dont much care where it comes from as long as its good.

Reply by dvogler, Jun 8, 2014.

Too bad you're on the east coast!  Some of the better Willamette Pinot probably doesn't get out your way. Or does it?

Reply by EMark, Jun 9, 2014.

We all have geographic disadvantages.  I can easily find Chilean wines, for example, that are very reasonably priced, but, while these are good wines, they are not the transcendental experiences that I occasionally see reported here on Snooth.  I will continue the research, however.

Let me add my welcome to the Forum, KBoss.

Reply by kboss00, Jun 9, 2014.

I get out to CA and OR once or twice a year for a food and wine tour, i'm there again in July. I"ll check out 4-5 vineyards in Willamette valley while i'm there. it's not too late for suggestions.


Reply by vin0vin0, Jun 10, 2014.

KBoss, here's a link to a snooth post I did a year ago after our last trip to Willamette/Eugene:

We'll be out there again over the 4th visiting our son in Portland and have rented a VRBO in McMinville for a few days. Here are some additional wineries on my list to eventually visit.

Argyle Winery                    Dundee
Bergström                         Newberg
Brick House*                     Newberg
Domaine Drouhin              Dayton
Ken Wright Cellars            Carlton
Soter Vineyards*                Carlton
Adelsheim Vineyard            Newberg
Ayoub Vineyard*                  Dundee
Bethel Heights                     Salem
Chehalem                            Newberg
Domaine Serene                 Dayton
Evesham Wood Vineyard*  Salem
Hamacher Wines                Carlton
J.K. Carriere                        Newberg
Le Cadeau Vineyard*          Dundee
Penner-Ash                         Newberg
ROCO*                               Newberg
WillaKenzie Estate             Yamhill

*By appointment (last time I checked)

Reply by dmcker, Jun 10, 2014.

Soter and Drouhin are both definitely excellent. Several other good ones on that list.

Reply by Wineogre, Jun 10, 2014.

Dear KBoss,

welcome. We get very little of this wine in Australia. I served some Evesham Wood Pinot at one of our College dinners and there were great responses from the afficionados and the less experienced alike. It may not rate as highly against the rest above, however, I feel that you are better supporting an operation with the potential to do better again in the future, than one that is "resting on its laurels" and charging likewise.

Reply by tradewater, Jun 13, 2014.

I try to keep a few bottles of the Chilean Carmenere in my cellar and surprise friends with it from time to time. The Santa Rita is delightful !  The Errazuriz is excellent, too and as an amateur anthropologist / sociologist, I find the Family Errazuriz very interesting -- especially Picasso's "second mother", Eugenia Huici Errazuriz ( as I recall )...


Reply by dvogler, Jun 13, 2014.

My boss loves big California cabs, so I usually wait for him to open some at his place for dinner, but more recently he's been into the Errazuriz Don Maximiano.  Nice, but for the price (in Victoria it's $89) I could think of other things!

Reply by zufrieden, Jun 13, 2014.

Soon... very soon, the investment in Chilean wine areas will necessitate a rise in price (this is the economist speaking).  This is inevitable as these products (fine wines) are mostly intended for the export market (and some for the new settlers who are escaping the high cost of retirement in the US, Canada and, to some extent, Western Europe.

Generally, Chilean wines are very sound, technically wonderful but lacking in heart.  That may, of course, change as Chile grows as a nation.  Chile itself has much heart.



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