Chile is one of the oldest South American wine countries and the only one that has never been affected by the dreaded phylloxera vastatrix.
This narrow and long country enjoys three climate zones; hot, Mediterranean, and cool.
In the northern hot climate zone, generally grapes are used to produce pisco, a potent grape must based spirit mostly used for cocktails, although Chileans like it in combination with beer.
Central Chile enjoys a Mediterranean climate mostly due to the Humbold Stream, and the Andes Mountains in the east.
Bio Bio-, Itata Valleys, and further south are cool. Growers plant cool climate grapes like Riesling, pinot noir, and occasionally also chardonnay.
In this long, sausage shaped country, valleys run horizontal and there are there are many starting at 30 latitude south Elqui, Limari, Choapa, Aconqagua, Casablanca, San Antonio, Maipo, Cachapoal, Colchagua, Curico, Maule, Itata, Bio Bio and Malleco Valley at 40 latitude south.
In recent years, great strides were made to improve quality, and now both large and mid-sized wineries embarked on promoting their wines world-wide.
Recently, 31 wineries poured their wines to an eager and ever growing public who appreciate quality, consistency, and reasonable prices.
The following wines stood out:
(Some are listed on the general list of the L C B O, others appear from time to time on Vintages and Classic catalogue releases and most can be ordered through the Ontario agent of the winery in a minimum of one case quantity).
Pinot Noir 2008, Amayna, Leyda Valley, Vina Graces Silva brilliant colour, fruity, fll-bodied and succulent 91/100
Chardonnay, 2009, Amayna, Leyda valley superb depth, aroma and balance
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Cabernet Sauvingon, 2005, Vina Haras de Pirque, Maipo Valley excellent depth, colour, balance and length
Albis, 2005, Vina Haras de Pirque
A blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and carmenere that reflects harmony, excellent mouth feel and fruit
La Capitana Barrel Reserve Merlot, 2005, Cachapoal Valley plum aromas, soft texture, deep colour and long aftertaste
Conde de Superunda, 2003, Vina M. Torres, Curico Valley superbly balanced, excellent depth of flavours and full body
Gewurztraminer/Riesling, 2009, Vina M. Torres fruity, elegant and refined to sip, or enjoy with light foods
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Montes Alpha, 2006, Vina Montes Brilliant colour, berry fruits, full bodied, and excellent finish
Chardonnay Alpha, 2008, Vina Montes, Casablanca valley creamy texture, fine acidity, full bodied with a smooth mouth feel
Shiraz Reserva, 2006, Vina Tabali, Limari Valley Berry fruit aromas, well extracted, layers of flavour, ad long finish. Excellent value.
Cabernet Sauvingon Reserva, 2005, Vina Tabali, Limari Valley fruity, elegant, ripe tannins, good depth
Sauvignon Blanc, 2009, Vina Casa Lapostolle, Cachapoal Valley One of the best sauvignon blancs of the country. Wafting gooseberry aromas, is well balanced, medium bodied and elegant
Chardonnay Classic. 2009, Casa Lapostolle Pear apple aromas greet the nose, minerality and full body. Long and satisfying finish Excellent value