Chile has a long viticultural history for a New World wine region dating to the 16th century when the Spanish conquistadors brought Vitis vinifera vines with them as they colonized the region. In the mid-19th century, French wine varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Carmenère and Cabernet Franc were introduced. In the early 1980s, a renaissance began with the introduction of stainless steel fermentation tanks and the use of oak barrels for aging. Wine exports grew very quickly as quality wine production increased. The number of wineries has grown from 12 in 1995 to over 70 in 2005. Reasons for this sudden expansion varies, but all are essential to understanding Chilean wine culture. The largest factor, and arguably most prominent, relates to the large amount of French families immigrating to Chile during the late 20th century. The French were able to share their fine tastes and experience with the native Chileans, expanding their knowledge of the wine world. Chile is now the fifth largest exporter of wines in the world, and the ninth largest producer. The climate has been described as midway between that of California and France. The most common grapes are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Carmenère.
- Item #: i_350249Bottle Size: 750MLJames Suckling: 99JAMES SUCKLING 99 POINTS - This is really focused and refined with fantastic dried flowers and dark berries. Dried-lavender and mint undertones. Medium-to full-bodied with refined and polished tannins that are all together and so focused. Really integrated and melted together on the palate. Compact and very linear. Please give this two or three years to come completely together, but it’s already breathtaking."
The Marnier Lapostolle family, founders of the liqueur Grand Marnier, created Casa Lapostolle in 1994 with the ambition to create world-class wines by combining the superb terroir of Chile with their French winemaking philosophy. With Michel Rolland as winemaker consultant, they decided to create Clos Apalta, the flagship of the winery, which debuted with the vintage 1997.
Within just a few years, this wine achieved remarkable international recognition, and was soon considered as being part of the world’s greatest wines. It has now become a standalone wine, with its own specific vineyard in Apalta, and a dedicated winery.
ONE OF THE MOST AWARDED WINES IN THE WORLD
• Five times in the Wine Spectator Top 100, three times in the Top 3
• Clos Apalta is the one and only South American wine which has been #1 of the Wine Spectator Top 100
• Since the creation of the Top 100 only two wines of the Southern hemisphere have been #1: Clos Apalta 2005 and Penfolds Grange 1995.
- Item #: i_378123Bottle Size: 750mlJames Suckling: 96JAMES SUCKLING 96 POINTS - "A juicy and delicious second wine from Clos Apalta. Beautiful, ripe and delicious with dark berries and mushrooms. Full-bodied and very balanced with complex walnut, spice and berry character. Dark chocolate and hazelnuts at the finish. Drinkable now, but better in 2022."
- Item #: i_378489Bottle Size: 750MLJames Suckling: 94JAMES SUCKLING 94 POINTS - "I love how the leafy complexity of dried sage, pine cones and forest floor combines with earth and paprika, but then with very fresh fruit, such as blueberries and citrus. Medium to full body, chewy and grainy tannins and a bark-laden finish."
- Item #: i_379989Bottle Size: 750mlThe transversal Elqui Valley borders the Pacific Ocean to the West, the Atacama Desert to the North, and the Andes Mountains to the East. While it sits closer to the equator than any other fine wine region in Chile, evening winds blast through this valley 365 days a year bringing summer nighttime temperatures to as low as 40 degrees and creating electric natural acidity in the region’s grapes Danish born and raised Steffan Jorgensen (previously Head Winemaker at Bergevin Lane in Walla Walla) and his wife Pamela Nunez (native to Chile and an experienced winemaker with stints across Chile’s top properties) make small lot varietal wines and blends from 20 acres of estate fruit planted in four separate vineyard sites. All wines are made with special attention to their mineral and earthy aspects and combine with Steffan’s style that delivers a broad/voluptuous style with deep acidity.
Aromas of black plum, urfa pepper, and spring flowers. Round, silky palate, with more black fruit, cinnamon, and baking spice. Finishes long and spicy.