Chile is a long, narrow country dominated by the Andes to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Its vineyards cover an 800-mile stretch of land with a range of varied and diverse micro climates from the hotter and drier regions in the north to the wetter and cooler regions in the south. Chile has a long viticulture history from the 16th century when the Spanish brought vinifera with them. In the 19th century, French varieties were planted. Stop by on Saturday as we tour the vineyards.
2012 Undurraga, U Chardonnay/Riesling $10 (Central Valley)
85% Chardonnay, 15% Riesling
Don Francisco Undurraga, an enterprising man in the 19th century, was one of the pioneers of winemaking in Chile and founder of Viña Undurraga with plants he brought over personally from France and Germany. Today Undruuaga has expanded its holding into most of Chile’s wine regions. For this wine the Riesling underwent twice weekly lees resuspension for 3 months, while 20% of the Chardonnay was aged with oak .The blend is a wine smooth rich bodied wine with a bit of spiciness.
2011 Leyda Pinot Noir $14 (Lyeda Valley)
Viña Leyda is located at the west side of the Coastal Mountain Range of Chile, just 7 kilometers from the Pacific Ocean. They pioneered viniculture in this valley, creating the new designation of origin, D.O. which is named after them. The Pinot Noir is made in a fruit driven style showing its cold climate influence. Aromas of blueberries and strawberries mingle with earthy mineral and herbaceous notes.
2011 Undurraga Aliwen Cabernet Sauvignon/Carmenere $14 (Rapel Valley)
60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Carménère
Carménère a almost forgotten Bordeaux varietal has thrived in Chile. The Aliwen ages nine months in French and American oak. Notes of ripe fruit, spices and oak perfectly blend delivering a wonderful aroma. The wine has great body, sweet tannins and a long elegant finish.
2010 Cousiño-Macul, Finis Terrai $26 (Maipo Valley)
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah
Founded in 1856, Cousiño Macul is the only winery in Chile amongst those established in the 19th century that continues in the hands of the original founding family. The Finis Terrai offers a complex nose, in which notes of wild berries, blueberry, raspberry, and blackberry can be felt, as well as a subtle French oak aroma, in perfect balance with the fruit. In the mouth plum and strawberry, accompanied by a slight sweetness, principally from the merlot, can be found. It’s intense, balanced and round, with ripe tannins and a long finish.
2009 Undurraga, Terrior Hunter Syrah $20 (Limarí)
The Terroir Hunter is Undurraga’s to make wines best suited to each region. This savory, meaty Syrah is made in tiny quantities and hails from the remote region of Limarí near the Atacama desert in the north of Chile where the semi-arid, cool climate with alluvial terraces of calcareous soils makes bright and mineraled Syrah, This wine has key notes of black pepper, smoke, and tar that accent the wine’s plush and concentrated core of black fruit.
Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5. No matter what day you stop by we always have something open to sample.