90% Carmenere and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon from Peumo, Cachapoal Valley, Chile.
SRP of $17 and available for as low as $13. Imported by Excelsior Wines (Banfi Vintners). Sample submitted for review.
From the bottle:
"From cooler vineyards near riverbanks in Chile, Concha y Toro carefully selects its grapes to make the highest quality wines with an emphasis on freshness: Series Riberas, Gran Reserva.
Planted on an old terrace on the northern river bank and cooled by the Cachapoal River, the Carmenere vines afford powerful and concentrated wines laden with ripe red fruit, violet, and chocolate.
If you are a Cabernet Sauvignon fan who hasn't tried Carmenere (the signature grape of Chile), this is your wine. As we covered in our Tour of Chile series focusing on Carmenere, this is an under-appreciated grape that provides great value.
Today's wine comes from Concha y Toro's Serie Ribera, or Riverbank Series. The aim of this particular line is to highlight varieties that are grown near one of Chile's major rivers, the Rapel, Cachapoal, Maule and Tinguiririca. We previously covered the Malbec in this series and gave it a Bulk Buy rating. Can the Carmenere live up to this high standard? Let's find out.
The 2011 Concha y Toro Serie Riberas Gran Reserva Ribera del Cachapoal Carmenerebegins with an excellent aroma of black cherry, plum, beautiful violet notes, dark chocolate and hints of spice. Tasting the wine reveals rich, dense dark fruit wrapped up in a wonderful smooth and luscious texture. There's a hint of green (pyrazine) but it works quite well in this medium-bodied wine. Add in a nice light spicy streak and soft dusty tannins and you've got a winner. It ends dry with long lasting savory dark fruit. This is a wonderful option to mix things up a bit!
See a listing of local retailers selling this wine here.