In episode two of the Chile Expedition series, Wine Enthusiast's Contributing Editor for South America, Michael Schachner, visits Viña MontGras to get a behind-the-scenes look at a cool blending class offered to winery guests.
Situated in Chile’sColchagua Valley, Montgras Winery was established in 1993 by brothers Hernán and Eduardo Gras, along with their business partner Cristián Hartwig. Santiago Margozzini and Matías Lema serve as the winemakers for MontGras Vineyards with renowned California winemaker Paul Hobbs serving as wine consultant according to our MontGras wine reviews. Three years after its inception Vina MontGras, along with five other area wineries, founded the Colchagua Valley Wine Route to help promote tourism and educate the public about the traditions of Chilean winemaking. There are five ranges of MontGras wines available which are Varietals, De Gras Varietals, Quatro, Reserva, De Gras Reserva and Soleus; their line of wines produced using organically grown grapes. While Vina MontGras is well known for their entry and affordable line of wines, it is typically their Quatro Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Carmenere and Malbec blend that is found atop our MontGras wine ratings. For more information check out our Vina Montgras wine buying guide below.
In every vintage this blend of Cabernet, Malbec, Merlot and Carmenère gets a little better, and the 2005 is the best yet. It’s a ripe one for sure, with licorice, kirsch and earthy warmth on the nose. The body is big and the wine tastes of berry jam, licorice and chocolate. Balanced and long, with bitter espresso on the finish. Drink now through 2010.
Fairly dark, with masculine aromas of burning brush, leather and cassis. The palate is pure as crystal, with cherry, tobacco and earth flavors along with black currant. Finishes full as a packed house, with chocolaty overtones. Excellent forthe price. Imported by Palm Bay Imports.
Here’s one of the standout Best Buy reds of the season out of Chile. There’s welcoming grapeball and sweet berry aromas mixed with olive and tobacco. The feel is smooth and medium-deep, and the blackberry and plum flavors are just right. Barely herbal, with a long finish. Carmenère in its simple glory.
Excellent red fruit is on display from start to finish. The bouquet is a sweet and sly mix of chocolate, toast, earth and caramel, and once you taste it, well, it’s your basic berry cornucopia. Very good in terms of feel and balance, with some complexity to boot.
Leather, earth and bold fruit on the nose, and then sweet plum, berry and chocolate on the palate. It’s a blend of Cabernet, Malbec, Merlot and Carmenère that really couldn’t have come together much better. It’s rich, ripe and tasty, and at 14.6% alcohol it’s nothing if not a New World heavyweight. Imported by Palm Bay Imports.
Priced just above the Best Buy level, Quatro is still a great value. MontGras brings Cabernet, Malbec, Carmenère and Syrah together in a well-meshed way. The wine is big and full of blackberry fruit. It has some woody characteristics, but mostly it’s harmonious as it builds to a nice finish of mocha and fine tannins.
One of the best values in Chilean wine is Quatro, a lusty blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Carmenère and Syrah. The nose is deep and roasted, with aromas of bacon, vanilla, pastry and black fruit. Lush and full in the mouth, with intense blackberry and cassis flavors. A titan at a great price, and ageable over the short term. Drink now through 2013.
Sweet and smoky on the nose, with prune, hickory and spice aromas that come together well. The palate on this four-grape blend is saturated and meaty, while the flavors of blackberry, coffee and dark plum are lush and finish with toast and spice. Always one of Chile’s best values; an overperformer year after year.