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I recommend you to start tasting the new style of chilean premium wines. Wines so misterious and complex like Purple Angel of Montes, the first premium carmenere with just a bit of petit verdot. Chile after more than 10 years is taking carmenere into a higher level of quality with great quality wines. With over 6000 hectars of Carmenere in Chile from Elqui Valley to Bio Bio River, the fifth wine exporter of wines worldwide finally decided to go for it and started offering since few years ago a higher range of wines. Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Carmenere are the great surprises you should try in spectacular blends. Go for it!
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I like Syrahs from cold areas of chile. Elqui and Limari Valley are launching great syrahs due to the morning fog that stays in the coast, so the maturity is slow and interesting. This areas have no rain during the whole year almost, because they are 500 kilometers north of the capitol of Chile (santiago), but close to the coast, the "fog or camanchaca" allows to mantain the grapes in the vines for longer time and at the same time it´s quiet an interesting wine. Some examples are Tabali and AguaTierra wines from Limari and Falernia from Elqui.

I think Chile has a great potential in good quality syrah!

Originally posted by spo1977:
Which Syrah do you like right now? Not syrupy sweet either.
I just finished a Purple Angel. What a treat. I love Montes, especially their cabs. Ther aye nicely priced in PA. I love the H, but it is over 60 bucks. I am currently drinking a very nice 2003 Terrunyo...simply excellent ($22). For lower priced great Chilean, may I recommend the Montes Marquis Merlot (yes even a Merlot). I sincerely respect Chilean wines. I have 6 Don Melchor and am verry happy with them.
Let´s see...Chile is very similar to California, but up side down...the northern you´s dryer until you get to atacama desert. BUT, we have to big mountais chains, Andes Mountains and Coastal Mountain right next to the Pacific on this, each river going down from the Andes (east to west) creates an entrance to the internal valley between both mountains. The fog is all the way from north to south...but gets inside these entrances (rivers) so you can have 3 or 4 wines zones..closer to coast for whites and then reds.

Second tip: In the north close to La Serena or Limari or Elqui Valley does not rain at all al year round...semi desertic grapes have longer time to wines like AguaTierra (reds like Syrah/Carmenere) or Tabali (Whites and Reds) ....

In the central south valleys...they have rain close to the´s a risk...

Chile is growing grapes in extreme areas and the results are amazing...happends the same in the south with wineries like Casanueva (Itata valley), Cono Sur (pinot noir)...due to higher risk of washington State latitude...but south of chile

and also
Originally posted by MiamiAtty:
Max...nice post. I also have a question about the fog. Do you find that you generally enjoy grapes from cooler climates regardless of the variety? Personally, I have been into California mountain region cabs lately(Mt. Veeder, Howell Mountain etc.)which I have been enjoying tremendously.
One great tip, Carmenere grape in Europe before dissapiring after Filoxera (insect) attack that destroyed almost all the vines not only carmenere was considered a regular variety because the weather was not proper for this variety that needs longer growing season periods of maturity...and in Chile found the great place to in europe the quality was not good...but as a grape variety provides great colour, body, tannins among others that when are in balance...IT´S AMAZING AND FIRST CLASS WINE...specially if it´s coming from sunny areas with a longer time for growing...try´s a prejudice chileans are changing it worlwide!!

Originally posted by Dave Dionysus:
I absolutely agree. Chile has many excellent wines, and I am growing particularly fond of the carmenere grape. I recently tried Terrunyo 2003 Carmenere and was totally blown away by it. Check my tasting note in the forum. Carmenere has recently replaced Pinot Noir in my mind as the grape to watch.


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