Five years ago, when I launched this site, I wasn’t sold on Chilean pinot noir. They had produced a couple decent ones, but for the most part it was lacking. But my how things have changed. In the last 10-15 years the quality of wines coming from Chile has increased significantly and while pinot noir was a bit of a laggard on the Chilean evolution, it’s come around in the last few years and they’re consistently producing some tasty pinot noir now.
This one comes from Santa Carolina, a pretty big producer in Chile with 2,000 hectares of vineyards. It comes from the Casablanca Valley, one of the best cool-climate regions in Chile and is part of the Santa Carolina “Reserva” line of wines—their entry-level priced series.
This wine has really nice aromas, such as raspberry and plum with intense spice, which I would describe as a combination of cola and black pepper. The intensity on the nose is also pretty good. The palate offers raspberry, tart cherry and plum flavors up front, with a touch of raspberry tea on the mid-palate. The acidity is perfect. The mouth feel is nice, but nothing exceptional. It finishes long with cherry and cranberry flavors. This is a really good pinot noir for the price.
Wine: Santa Carolina Casablanca Estate Reserva
Variety: Pinot Noir
Disclosure: This wine was received as a media sample.