Contributing Editor


Reviews wines from Argentina, Chile and Spain.

Chilean Wines

Among New World wine-producing countries, Chile has earned a reputation as a value leader, with many good-to-excellent wines priced under $15 a bottle. Which isn’t to say that the Chilean wine region doesn’t produce its share of top-flight wines as well; in fact, some of its red varietals and blends can compete with the great wines of the New and Old World.

If one grape is king in the Chilean wine regions, it’s Cabernet Sauvignon, which since the dawning of Chile’s wine industry in the 1850s has consistently succeeded in the country’s warm, dry, Pacific Ocean-and-Andes influenced climate. Other red varieties in Chile are Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Malbec and the signature Carmenère, a Bordeaux variety now found almost exclusively in Chile (98% of the world’s Carmenère is grown there). As for white wines, Chilean Sauvignon Blanc has become increasingly popular and performs well when grown close to the cool Pacific; Chardonnay is also ubiquitous in Chile.

Regionally speaking, most Chilean winegrapes are grown in a number of river-fed valleys in the central portion of this long, thin country, including Maipo, Casablanca, Rapel, Colchagua, Curicó and Maule. In recent years, wineries have expanded the grape belt to Bío Bío in the cool and sometimes wet south as well as Limarí and Elqui in the dry, breezy north.

Wine Enthusiast’s Buying Guide features thousands of Chilean wine ratings from all over the country. Conduct a quick and easy search to find ratings from your favorite producers to access the Chilean wine guide.

Showing 4,521 thru -4,528 of 5,979
84
points

Terra Vega 2009 Kosher Cabernet Sauvignon (Central Valley)

  • Online Exclusive
  • Kosher
  1. $10
This kosher Cab is rubbery and leathery, with medicinal berry fruit aromas. The palate is plump but wayward, with herbal, roasted berry flavors and leafy, peppery accents. Hollow and bland on the finish, but still decent for the price.  — M.S.  (9/1/2010)
84
points

Indomita 2008 Selected Varietal Merlot (Maipo Valley)

  • Online Exclusive
  1. $12
Earthy and quiet, with aromas of mushroom, black fruit and raisin. The palate feel is somewhat rough and rugged, with heavy, roasted black plum flavors. Baked and roasted on the finish as well, and slightly stewy as a whole.  — M.S.  (9/1/2010)
84
points

Santa Ema 2008 Selected Terroir Cabernet Sauvignon (Maipo Valley)

  • Online Exclusive
  1. $10
Opens with a mix of toast and dusty, herbal aromas, and with time it turns more saucy than precisely fruity. A bulky wine with a chunky mouthfeel and fleshy flavors of herbal plum. A late wave of tartness and more herbal flavors cements things into place.  — M.S.  (9/1/2010)
84
points

Espiritu de Chile 2007 Gran Reserva Carmenère (Curicó Valley)

  • Online Exclusive
  1. $14
Tomato leaf, herb and spice aromas mix with green-leaning raspberry and marshmallow sweetness on the nose. The palate is gritty and tough, with salty, herbal cherry and brambly flavors. Short and choppy on the finish.  — M.S.  (9/1/2010)
84
points

Siegel 2007 Crucero Reserva Carmenère (Colchagua Valley)

  • Online Exclusive
  1. $13
Bold like a punch in the face, with olive, charred beef, herbs and bramble on the nose. The palate is narrow but sturdy, with tough tannins and flavors of herbal berry fruit and olive. Lemony as well, with a short finish.  — M.S.  (9/1/2010)
84
points

Rayun 2009 Sauvignon Blanc (Central Valley)

  • Best Buy
  • Online Exclusive
  1. $8
Dusty, peachy and sort of flat on the nose, but overall it does well for $8. The mouthfeel is round but will be short-lived, so drink it soon to capture the lemon, orange and pineapple flavors.  — M.S.  (7/1/2010)
84
points

Viu Manent 2009 Estate Collection Sauvignon Blanc (Colchagua Valley)

  1. $9
Dry and peppery on the nose, and then there’s a simple, pithy palate with lime-driven flavors and green apple. Tastes pithy on the finish, with Key lime finishing notes. Doesn’t really show much.  — M.S.  (7/1/2010)
84
points

Carmen 2008 Carmenère (Rapel Valley)

  • Online Exclusive
  1. $10
Racy and tight-bodied red wine, with a strained, herbal set of aromas and a high-acid, razor’s-edge palate of lively red fruit flavors and an offset of drying oak. Too generic and tough on the cheeks to tip the scale.  — M.S.  (7/1/2010)
Showing 4,521 thru -4,528 of 5,979
Facebook Activity
Twitter Activity