Chile is a country known for its stunning landscapes and vibrant culture. It is also home to some outstanding wines, with the Chilean wine industry gaining traction in recent years. Let’s take a closer look at the wines of Chile and what makes them so special.
The History of Chilean Wine
Wine has been produced in Chile since the 16th century, with Spanish settlers bringing grape vines from Europe. The wine industry flourished in the 19th century and continued to grow throughout the 20th century until it became one of the leading new-world wine producers in the world.
The Grape Varieties
Chile is known for its signature red wine, Carmenere, which can only be found in Chile. Other popular grape varieties include Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot for reds; as well as Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and Chardonnay for whites.
The Winemaking Process
The winemaking process in Chile is modern yet traditional, using both old-world techniques such as barrel aging and modern technologies such as temperature control fermentation tanks. A lot of focus is placed on sustainable viticulture practices such as organic farming and biodynamic farming methods to produce high-quality wines that are environmentally friendly.
Maipo Valley, located just southeast of Santiago, is one of the most famous wine regions in Chile. Other prominent regions include Casablanca Valley and Colchagua Valley – both of which produce some exceptional Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Carmenere, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah wines.
Chilean wines pair well with a range of dishes including creamy cheeses or pastas (for whites) or grilled meats or strong cheeses (for reds). Carmenere pairs particularly well with steak due to its bold flavors while Riesling goes great with seafood dishes thanks to its bright acidity.
The wines of Chile are a true reflection of its vibrant culture and unique landscapes. With an array of grape varieties, winemakers utilizing traditional techniques yet embracing modern technologies and sustainable viticulture practices – there is something for everyone! So next time you’re looking for something new to try – consider trying a bottle from Chile – you won’t be disappointed!