Wines of Chile
by Alan Kingsbury - Friday August 12, 2016 10:08 am
Here, winemaker Marcelo Papa has been moving away from the older, heavyweight 'New World' style towards fresher wines that better reflect their individual terroirs.
This is evident in the new vintage Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2014.
The characteristically lush tropical fruit flavours are still present yet a new lightness of touch comes with a bright acidity and enlivening minerality.
The flavoursome reds from this range are equally impressive.
Marcelo Papa has also been developing the Marques de Casa Concha Merlot 2013 (£11.99 Waitrose), a full fruited and soft textured wine which features Cabernet Sauvignon and Carmenere grapes in the blend.
Viña Maipo varieties are widely available on UK shelves and offer fruit driven wines with clarity of style.
Viña Maipo Classic Series Merlot 2015 (£6.50 Morrisons) is a pleasing easy-drinker which has aromas of sweet cherry and blackberry.
On the palate, the intense, plummy fruit flavours are smoothly bathed in soft vanilla making it a very accessible all-rounder for the table.
Even more of a bargain is the Viña Maipo core range Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (£4.80 Tesco).
This densely flavoured white wine certainly packs a punch with its rich, dried tropical fruit delivered in a full bodied and creamy textured style.
Espiritu de Chile
This summer saw the UK launch by Aresti of the Espiritu de Chile brand In response to the growing popularity of Chilean wines in the marketplace.
Aresti's chief winemaker Jon Usabiaga introduced the Reserva and Classic Varietal ranges aimed at a new generation of wine consumers.
Combining grapes from the Maipo and Curico regions, Espiritu Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 (£7 RRP) has an approachable character of bright cherry and blackberry fruit underpinned by a textured, tannic earthiness.
From the Reserva selection, Espiritu de Chile, Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (£9 RRP) is a typically robust Chilean white, but in this case strikingly dry and mineral. Exotic fruit flavours are given a citrus twist making this an eminently useful outdoor, barbeque or party wine.
With its enviable terrains and climates, Chile has the gift of delivering consistency and value in wines that are set to take an increasingly prominent place at our tables.