World Trip 2010 – Chile Part 2

23.02.10


Up early and off to the Los Robles vineyards in the Colchagua Valley.These vineyards are both biodynamic and organic. They have their own farm animals for manure and have replanted the surroundings with myriads of native wild flowers. Chickens and bees share the surroundings picking and pollinating as they go.


Emiliana use nine biodynamic preparations to attract cosmic forces and animal energy. These are:
Horn Manure
Silica or quartz
Yarrow blossoms (
Achillea millefolium)
Chammomile blossoms (
Chamomilla recutita)
Stinging nettle (
Urtica dioica)
Oak bark (
Quercus pedunculata)
Dandelion flowers (
Taraxacum officinate)
Valerian flowers (
Valeriana officinate)
Horsetail plant (
Equisetum officinate)



The medicinal herbs help the micro-organisms in the compost to digest the organic matter (the same as drinking herb tea after a meal aids in human digestion).


Colchagua is in Chile’s 6th Region and is part of the larger Rapel Valley. The four seasons of the year are clearly differentiated, and the grapes ripen easily and uniformly. A unique combination of marine breezes and Andean winds makes this the perfect place to grow red varietals such as Merlot, Syrah, and especially Carmenere. It has an average temperature of 22ºC (72ºF) and low annual precipitation. The soils are alluvial in origin, fairly deep, and are uniformly silty-loam in texture.


Los Robles is located on the north side of the river Tinguiririca Nancagua in the town of Valle de Colchagua (Rapel). It is part of an estate of 292 hectares which is located at the foot of the Cordillera de la Costa, where, among oaks and quillayes, is a spring that waters the vineyards of Syrah, Carmenere, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Mourvedre and Malbec. Its soils are more acidic (pH 5.8), a condition which, combined with the careful and responsible management of the vineyards can produce wines of great character.
The Los Robles winery has a capacity of wine close to 600,000 liters, and in it are born icons Emiliana wines, GE, Coyame and Novas Winemaker’s Selection.


After touring the vineyards with Cesar Morales – Chief Oenologist, Cristian and Alvaro Espinoza ‘King’ of winemaking as Anthony puts it!AT moved on to the tasting room to sample the jewels in the crown of Emiliana. They tasted:




WINE
REGION
Pts/ 20
LIST PRICE
(if applies)
ADOBE RANGE
Sauvignon blanc 09
Casablanca Valley
16
€94.00
Chardonnay Reserve 09
Casablanca Valley
16
Rosé 09
Syrah 70%, Cab.S. 30%
Central Valley
16
€94.00
Merlot Reserve 08
Rapel Valley
16
€94.00
Syrah Reserve 08
Rapel Valley
17.5
€94.00
Carmanere Reserve 08
Colchagua Valley
17
€94.00
ADOBE WINEMAKER’S SELECTION
Chardonnay/Marsanne/Viognier 08
(Barrell Fermented)
Casablanca Valley
17
€94.00
Gewurztraminer 08
Rapel Valley
16.5
€94.00
Syrah 07
Casablanca Valley
17
€104.00
Syrah 72%/Mourvedre 28% Rsve 07
Colchagua Valley
19
Cabernet Sauvignon 07
Maipo Valley
17
COYAM 2007 “Oak Forest”
Syrah 38%/ Cab.S 21%/ Carmanere 21%/ Merlot17%/ Petit Verdot 2%/ Mourvedre 1%
Colchagua Valley
18.5
€180
Gê 2005
30% Syrah, 24% Cab.S, 30% Carménère
16% Merlot.
Colchagua Valley
19
€180
PUNA SNIPEThe final Reserve blends
These were not scored as obviously we think they are top notch!!
Cabernet/Syrah 08
Maipo Valley
€94.00
Carmanere 08
Colchagua Valley
€94.00
Sauvignon Blanc 09
Casablanca Valley
€94.00
Chardonnay/Marsanne 09
Casablanca Valley
€94.00
PUNA SNIPE – Winemaker’s selection!
Merlot/Syrah/Cab.F/Petit V./Malbec 08
Aged in French and US Barrels for added complexity.
Valle Central
19!!
€104.00



While out there Anthony also blended for West Cork Bottlers, their own label – Seven Rivers Estate a Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot.


Emiliana believe in nature and it’s ability hence they use minimal filtration on all wines with as much yeast as possible.

That night after supper at Beta Bistro a tired but elated winemaker retired to his bed at the Hotel Santa Cruz. He felt like Billy the Kid in the olden days… Santa Cruz has a distinctly western feel to it!
Sadly I just visited the website of the Santa Cruz Hotel and discovered that the earthquake had reeked havoc there just days after Anthony’s departure. Here is an extract from the letter on their site:
While our homes, their architecture and facades have been destroyed, our Colchaguan SOUL is intact and full of the strength needed to rebuild and continue working to experience the magic and traditions of our land.


We would like to pass on the words of our founder, Carlos Cardoen Cornejo, who has put his soul into this area: “We are going to have to rebuild completely, which means we will have to close for a while or perhaps operate partially; but in the face of adversity we have to look ahead and save the Colchaguan and his patrimony”.

A chilling reminder of just how fragile parts of the world are.

Leave a Reply