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Chile

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Chateau Los Boldos Tradition Reserve Chardonnay 2018 (1x75cl)

Château Los Boldos was founded in 1991 and is situated 100km south of Santiago in the foothills of the Cachapoal Andes. Working with a portion of old vines originally planted in 1948, the focus from the onset has been on the production of premium wines. The estate has been transformed since it was purchased by Sogrape in 2008. Renowned soil scientist and viticultural consultant Pedro Parra (of Clos des Fous) was brought in to assess the plots and match the right variety to the different soils around the estate. The type of rootstock, planting density, orientation and the frequency of irrigation were all within Pedro’s remit, and the results are now being seen in the wines, especially since Victor Arce, previously of Perez Cruz, joined as winemaker in 2015.

Los Boldos has 170 hectares of vineyards which benefit from a Mediterranean climate. The clear, bright skies during the summer and the high diurnal temperature range are ideal for growing fruit that maintains fresh acidity whilst ripening to perfection. The nearby Cachapoal river also moderates temperatures, while stony alluvial soils in the vineyard ensure low yields. Los Boldos makes wine exclusively from their own vineyards, therefore controlling everything from grape to bottle.

Much-needed rain in winter replenished water levels in the vineyard. This was followed by a dry period, which prompted slow ripening, allowing for good flavour accumulation and the dry conditions ensured there was little disease pressure. 2018 was a good vintage across most of Chile for both quality and quantity.

The Chardonnay grapes were macerated in stainless steel tanks before fermentation took place over three weeks at temperatures between 13-15°C. No malolactic fermentation took place, and the wine spent a further three months in tank prior to bottling.

Bright pale yellow in colour, this wine has aromas of tropical fruit, apricots and pears. Lively, fresh acidity complements the wine’s persistent fruitiness and elegant finish.

£9.45

Chateau Los Boldos Tradition Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (1x75cl)

Château Los Boldos was founded in 1991 and is situated 100km south of Santiago in the foothills of the Cachapoal Andes. Working with a portion of old vines originally planted in 1948, the focus from the onset has been on the production of premium wines. The estate has been transformed since it was purchased by Sogrape in 2008. Renowned soil scientist and viticultural consultant Pedro Parra (of Clos des Fous) was brought in to assess the plots and match the right variety to the different soils around the estate. The type of rootstock, planting density, orientation and the frequency of irrigation were all within Pedro’s remit, and the results are now being seen in the wines, especially since Victor Arce, previously of Perez Cruz, joined as winemaker in 2015.

Los Boldos has 170 hectares of vineyards which benefit from a Mediterranean climate. The clear, bright skies during the summer and the high diurnal temperature range are ideal for growing fruit that maintains fresh acidity whilst ripening to perfection. The nearby Cachapoal river also moderates temperatures, while stony alluvial soils in the vineyard ensure low yields. Los Boldos makes wine exclusively from their own vineyards, therefore controlling everything from grape to bottle.

Much-needed rain in winter replenished water levels in the vineyard. This was followed by a dry period, which prompted slow ripening, allowing for good flavour accumulation and the dry conditions ensured there was little disease pressure. 2018 was a good vintage across most of Chile for both quality and quantity.

The must was fermented at a cool 13-15°C for a lengthy three week period in stainless steel tanks to retain crisp, clean varietal flavours. It rested for another three months in tank with no malolactic fermentation. The resulting wine is zesty and fresh with a bright fruit profile.

This wine is bright pale yellow in colour with youthful hues. On the nose, it has fresh citrus fruit and orange blossom aromas. The concentrated fruit flavours are vibrant and lively on the palate, and the finish is crisp and fruity.

£9.35

Errazuriz Aconcagua Costa Chardonnay 2016 (1x75cl)

"This is another gorgeous white with sliced apple, lemon rind, and just a hint of cream. Grapefruit. Full body, layered and beautiful. Energetic and vivid.

James Suckling, 93 points, May 2017

The Errazuriz Estate was founded in 1870 when Don Maximiano Errazuriz planted his first vineyards at Panquehue in the Aconcagua Valley - 100 km north of the Chilean capital. Recognising that this valley, with its cool, rainy winters, hot, dry summers and moist Pacific Ocean breezes, was ideal for growing grapes, Don Maximiano sent for the finest clones from France and with tenacity and perseverance transformed this barren land into a world class vineyard.

Today, the tradition of quality lives on with Don Maximiano's descendant, Eduardo Chadwick. Eduardo is the fifth generation of his family to be involved in the wine business. Eduardo has overseen the modernisation of the winemaking technology at this historic Estate whilst maintaining a distinct identity for its wines. Dedicated to producing estate grown wines of superior quality, Errazuriz has built a reputation as the 'Premier Family Wine Estate of Chile'.

Errazuriz's philosophy is best expressed by Don Maximiano who said, "From the best land, the best wine." Vina Errazuriz believe in the concept of terroir and strive to produce the finest wines by controlling every stage of the winemaking process, from grape growing in the Aconcagua and Casablanca valleys, to winemaking with the most natural techniques. An emphasis is placed on the delicate handling of the wines, with the aim of producing wines with elegance and complexity.

The grapes for the Aconcagua Costa Chardonnay come from the Manzanar vineyard, located barely 7.5 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Planted by Errazuriz in 2005 and 2009, the soil is thin layer of loamy texture and placed on a base of clay and metamorphic rock (slate/schist). This provides the mineral notes present in the wines that are grown in these vineyards.

Grapes were hand picked during the early hours of the morning, whole-cluster pressed and cold decanted in stainless steel tanks. The use of native yeasts, as well as cultured strains of yeast, during a wild fermentation contributes greater complexity to the wine. Fermentation took place at 18°-22°C, and approximately 50% of the final blend underwent malolactic fermentation. The wine remained on its fine lees in French oak barrels for ten months.

2016 was a very challenging year for Chilean wines. The El Niño weather/ocean current events delayed the grape development as it caused heavy rains and cooler temperatures. Consequently, the harvest took place two weeks later than previous years and only the best and healthiest grapes were selected. The result is very interesting as the slow maturity contributed to decrease the sugar and alcohol levels. Therefore, 2016 is characterized by wines with great elegance and freshness.

See also blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers at Errazuriz.

Errazuriz Aconcagua Costa Chardonnay 2016 - fiche technique

Lively aromas of lemon zest and lime blossom are underscored with hints of crisp pear and white flowers. The palate is heightened by a driving minerality and vibrant acidity that carries through on the lingering finish.

£12.75

Montes Alpha Casablanca Chardonnay 2016 (1x75cl)

Montes was established in 1988 by Aurelio Montes, Douglas Murray, Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand, with the aim of producing the best wines in Chile from the best regions. The Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon, first produced in 1987, broke the mould for premium wines in Chile. Since then, Alpha has developed to become the core range in the Montes portfolio. The grapes and sites are carefully selected in order to ensure varietal integrity and complexity. Viticulture is hands on rather than mechanical or industrial.

The vineyards for this wine are in the Aconcagua Costa region, where cool breezes and proximity to the Pacific Ocean produce ideal conditions for the Chardonnay to ripen slowly and fully. The sites are irrigated via a 'Sustainable Dry Farmed' system, developed by Aurelio and his team, which allows for extremely precise and minimal irrigating. The varied sandy and loam soils lend this wine tremendous complexity. The primary clones used are Dijon 76 and Clone 95, the former contributing tropical fruit and citrus and the latter lending depth and concentration from exceptionally concentrated grapes. The vineyards are vertically trained and drip irrigated, with yields usually less than 9000 kg per hectare.

The 2015—2016 was good for water availability, with an optimal amount of water in the soil during flowering. Summer was not very hot, with only a few heat spikes in January and February. Ripening was therefore later than in previous years by around 12 days, which gave time to monitor the taste of the berries and select the picking moment very precisely.

The grapes were hand picked during the early hours of the morning to ensure they reached the cellar at a cool temperature. The Chardonnay was processed using three different techniques: whole-cluster pressed, destemmed and pressed, and destemmed and cold macerated for a few hours. Fermentation took place in tank for 25 days at temperatures of 13°C – 14°C. 35% of the final blend was fermented in barrels with differing degrees of toast. 25% of the wine underwent malolactic fermentation, to obtain smoother wines with greater aromatic complexity.

This wine is bright golden, yellow in colour. The intense, complex nose offers tropical fruit aromas such as pineapple, banana and ripe mango, while pleasing notes of peaches and pears round out the fruity profile. The coastal climate is very much present in the subtle notes of grapefruit and white asparagus. The French oak also complements the aromatic profile with elegant and well-integrated toasted notes that recall hazelnut and vanilla. Perfectly balanced acidity results in a very fresh wine that also has generous volume.

£14.20

Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (1x75cl)

The 2017 vintage of this wine was awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2018 edition panel tasting of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc  (see blue link below).

Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2017 - Oct 2018 Decanter review

Montes was established in 1988 by Aurelio Montes, Douglas Murray, Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand, with the aim of producing the best wines in Chile from the best regions. The Montes wines are consistently good because they are meticulous throughout the entire production process. The Outer Limits wines were born out of Aurelio Montes' desire to push Chilean viticulture in a new direction. The vineyards that produce the grapes for the Montes Outer Limits Sauvignon Blanc are located 7 km from the coast of the resort town, Zapallar. They are the only vineyards with the Zapallar Denomination of Origin, which is the most coastal zone of the Aconcagua Valley. Due to the balance and concentration in the Outer Limits wines, they can be enjoyed now or allowed to age for a few years, rewarding with a wonderfully complex bouquet.

To see an excellent information sheet and tasting note for this wine, please click on the blue link below.

Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2018 - fiche technique

£15.45

Santa Rita Medalla Real Gran Reserva Chardonnay 2017 (1x75cl)

Medalla Real was born in 1983 in honor of Francisco García Huidobro, ancestor to the founding family of Viña Santa Rita and Marqués de Casa Real, who established the first Mint in Chile. To commemorate the Bicentennial of this event, a medal was coined with his profile and the symbol of the Spanish royal crown. Trajectory and recognition of quality have been a fundamental part of this wine’s history, positioning it as one of the classic and representative brands of Viña Santa Rita.

The grapes were harvested early in the morning in 10kg boxes. Then they were taken to the cellar in refrigerated trucks. Once in the cellar, 100% of the grapes went through a sorting table prior to pressing. The juice obtained is cold decanted for 12 hours and then racked of the coarse lees. The must start the fermentation in stainless steel tanks and then is transferred to oak barrels to ferment. 45 % of the must is fermented with native yeast and 55% fermented with selected yeast. Once the fermentation is complete, the wine remains in the barrels for 9 months with weekly battonage (lees stirring), twice a week at first and later just once later on.

The wine was aged for 9 months in French oak barrels, 15% of which were new. The remaining 75% was aged in a combination of second-, third-, and fourth-use barrels.

Bright, greenish-yellow in color. Intense and complex bouquet that combines mineral notes with light citrus, nectarines and flowers. The palate stands out for its refreshing acidity that balances nicely with the wine’s fruitiness, good weight, silky texture, and depth.

£13.40

Torreon De Paredes Sauvignon Blanc 2017 (1x75cl)

Since its founding in 1979 in Rengo, 130 km. south of Santiago, Torreón de Paredes winery has had one clear, guiding principle: “A good wine can only be produced using top quality proprietary grapes”. This fundamental purpose gives the wines of Torreón de Paredes, which sits in the middle of the well-known Cachapoal Valley the unique characteristics of a celebrated winery. 

Please click the blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers themselves on the 2016 Vintage

Torreon de Paredes Sauvignon Blanc 2016 - fiche technique

£8.65

Valdivieso Eclat Botrytis Semillon 2013 (1x75cl)

Viña Valdivieso dates back to 1879 when Alberto Valdivieso founded Champagne Valdivieso, the first company in Chile and South America to make sparkling wine. More than a hundred years later in the late 1980s, the company expanded in a new direction when it began commercial production of still wines - as Viña Valdivieso – at their Curicó Valley winery in Lontué. Valdivieso wines have since had a very successful career, triumphing in major world markets and achieving the highest honours in international competitions. These achievements are not an objective in themselves, but rather the result of the search for superior quality wines that are both distinctive and attractive.

Please click the blue link below to see an excellent information sheet from Valdivieso themselves.

Valdivieso Eclat Botrytis Semillon 2013 - fiche technique

Lovely honeyed grapefruit with candied lemon on the nose. Very intense on the palate with natural fruit sweetness and vibrant acidity.

£12.30

Valdivieso Single Vineyard Wild Ferment Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (1x 75cl)

Based in Lontué in the Curicó Valley, Valdivieso has a wealth of vineyards and the quality of their terroirs is shown by their Single Valley Lot/Valley Selection and Single Vineyard wines. The whole range encapsulates everything that Chile excels at: rich, vibrant flavours and smooth, glossy textures - and the wines deserve the multitude of gongs they have picked up in recent years. Well-travelled Kiwi winemaker, Brett Jackson, has settled in Chile and much of Valdivieso’s success in recent years can be credited to his talent.

The vineyards here are located in the Leyda Valley, enjoying a strong influence from Leyda's maritime climate, due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean. This area is cold, therefore ideal for Sauvignon Blanc and its preferred slower ripening. This allows for greater retention of acidity and greater aromatic qualities. The objective is to make a wine that is a true reflection of this area, through an optimal combination of soil, climate and vine.

100% Sauvignon Blanc.

Harvest is by solely by hand in the second week of March. Traditional winemaking methods are employed, with the aim that the wine is a faithful reflection of the terroir from which it comes. The clusters are taken directly to the presses. The must undergoes a natural fermentation in barrels, driven by 'wild' yeasts, present in the grapes. To ensure successful fermentation, there is no addition of sulfur dioxide. The wine is kept in barrels of 500 litres, the barrels being of 100% French oak, and kept in contact with its lees for 6 months. Malolactic fermentation is not allowed to occur, in order to retain the crisp natural acidity of the Sauvignon Blanc grape.

Bright with noticeable green highlights. Has an elegant aromatic profile, studded with aromas of white fruits, mixed with a soft vegetable character with green chilli notes. This is a most fruity Sauvignon Blanc with more body than is usual: a direct result of the barrel fermentation and lees contact. It is unctuous and of a rich acidity that refreshes the palate, combining fresh fruit flavours and mineral characters with vinification techniques of 'wild ferment', to produce a wine of great elegance and balance.

£14.80

Valdivieso Valley Selection (Single Valley Lot) Chardonnay, Gran Reserva 2016 (1x75cl)

Naming note: this wine has been available under two different names, hence the bracketed title(!), despite being the same wine. It was previously badged as the Single Valley Lot, but has now joined the fleet of Valley Selection wines from Valdivieso. Technically, the new label is entitled to draw grapes from a slightly wider area of the Leyda Valley, although we believe it will make almost no noticeable change to the wine.

Well-travelled Kiwi winemaker, Brett Jackson, has settled in Chile and much of Valdivieso’s success in recent years can be credited to his talent.

Based in Lontué in the Curicó Valley, Valdivieso has a wealth of vineyards and the quality of their terroirs is best shown by their Single Valley Lot/Valley Selection and Single Vineyard wines. The whole range encapsulates everything that Chile excels at: rich, vibrant flavours and smooth, glossy textures - and the wines deserve the multitude of gongs they have picked up in recent years.

100% Chardonnay.

The vineyards are located in one of the coldest areas of the Leyda Valley. Because of this proximity to the sea, the coastal haze is more prolonged during the day exerting all the coastal influence of the valley. Under these conditions the fruit ripens slowly, maintaining its natural acidity and the delicate citrus aromas of Chardonnay.

Harvest is by hand in the first week of April. Grape bunches go through a meticulous selection and are then pressed directly. 50% of the volume is fermented in stainless steel tanks, and the other 50% is fermented in French oak barrels. Malolactic fermentation is not not allowed occur, theby preserving immediate fruit and acidity. The wine is stored for 12 months in French oak barrels (50%) and stainless steel tanks (50%).

Yellow colour with green tints and slight golden reflections. Great aromatic intensity of citrus fruits, lemon and grapefruit, mixed with aromas of tropical fruits. Light toasted notes from the oak. Lively and refreshing with a long finish.

£12.00

Valdivieso Valley Selection (Single Valley Lot) Viognier, Gran Reserva 2015 (1x75cl)

Naming note: this wine has been available under two different names, hence the bracketed title(!), despite being the same wine. It was previously badged as the Single Valley Lot, but has now joined the fleet of Valley Selection wines from Valdivieso. Technically, the new label is entitled to draw grapes from a slightly wider area of the Curico Valley, although we believe it will make almost no noticeable change to the wine.

Based in Lontué in the Curicó Valley, Valdivieso has a wealth of vineyards and the quality of their terroirs is shown by their Single Valley Lot/Valley Selection and Single Vineyard wines. The whole range encapsulates everything that Chile excels at: rich, vibrant flavours and smooth, glossy textures - and the wines deserve the multitude of gongs they have picked up in recent years. Well-travelled Kiwi winemaker, Brett Jackson, has settled in Chile and much of Valdivieso’s success in recent years can be credited to his talent.

Please click the blue link below to see an excellent information sheet from Valdivieso themselves.

Valdivieso Valley Selection Viognier 2015 - fiche technique

£11.75

Ventolera Sauvignon Blanc 2016 (1x 75cl)

Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2018 edition panel tasting of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc  (see blue link below).

Ventolera Sauvignon Blanc 2016 - Oct 2018 Decanter review

Ventolera is an exciting new venture between founder Vicente Izquierdo and one of Chile's top winemakers Stefano Gandolini. The vineyard, which was planted in 1999, is located in the region of the Leyda Valley, just six kilometres from the Pacific Ocean. The area is being singled out as being Chile's newest and most radical cool-climate wine region, which is strongly influenced by the cooling effects of the Humboldt Current that flows up from the Antarctic. ‘Ventolera’ is a Spanish word which refers to this strong sea wind; its cooling influence is instrumental in producing wonderfully elegant wines.

The grapes are grown in two blocks that are south east facing. Canopy management in the vineyard ensures protection of the grapes from extreme sun exposure. The high humidity level combined with the cooling effect from the sea ensures a moderate climate for the vines. The vines are grown in heat-retaining granite and alluvial soil.

100% Sauvignon Blanc hand selected grapes from specific blocks within Ventolera's estate vineyard. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks to retain the freshness, aromatics and a fruity style.

Zesty citrus aromas and an attractive hint of nettles lead to a real depth of flavour on the palate, with an intense mineral character and a long, vibrant finish. Match with seafood such as smoked salmon, cold meat platters or hard cheese.

£15.50

Vina Falernia Riesling 2018 (1x75cl)

Viña Falernia was founded in 1998 after Aldo Olivier Gramola realised the potential for producing superb wines in this semi-arid valley. Falernia began as an innovative venture, as it is Chile's most northernly winery estate, a considerable distance from the country's main wine-growing regions. The driving force has been a passion for wine and the challenge of transforming a tract of desert into green vineyards with enormous potential. Utilizing the latest technologies, Viña Falernia has succeded in transforming itself into a Premium wine producer. 

Viña Falernia is highly committed to improving productive processes with the lowest environmental impact in the vineyards and in the winery as well. In addition to the organic management of an important part of the vineyards, they are respectful of native trees in the area and have planted new plants on the borders of the vineyards. Moreover Falernia only uses products that respect and protect their ecosystem. 

This wine is 100% Riesling.

Falernia's own tasting notes for this wine are excellent, so please click the blue link below to see this wine's details.

Vina Falernia Riesling - fiche technique

£11.25

Vina Leyda Chardonnay Lot 5 2016 (1x 75cl)

Viña Leyda was founded in 1998, in Leyda Valley, Chile. Traditionally, Leyda Valley has been an area of natural pasture lands and basic crops such as wheat and barley. After evaluating the potential conditions of the area, a crucial investment was made which enabled water to be brought from the Maipo River through an eight kilometer pipeline. Leyda have now planted 230 hectares of vineyards.

This lively expression of cold-climate Chardonnay is the elegant Leyda Chardonnay Lot 5. It has a great mineral character with earthy notes. Light gold coloured, it offers toasted hazelnuts and slightly tropical aromas. Round and creamy, it shows off excellent minerality, lively acidity and a lengthy finish.

£17.90
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