Chile’s Gran Valle de Niebla Reserve Pinot Noir 2011

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This wine from Chile’s Rapel Valley came to us via the Wall Street Journal Wine Club. Pricing on-line through WSJ and other sources averages about $13-14.00 per bottle with discounts for larger quantities. This wine in particular was awarded the bronze at the International Wine and Spirits Competition 2011.

I continue to be a big Chilean wine fan. Bordered by the Andes, the Atacama desert , the Pacific Ocean and the Antarctic; Chile is considered to have great conditions for growing grapes.

Gran Valle’s winemaker is four time Chilean Winemaker of the year; Adolfo Hurtado. An impressive pedigree indeed in addition to his environmentally progressive methods in the vineyard. The wine bottle notes state that “he even uses a flock of geese to help protect vines from pests”!

Upon decanting I noted ripe fruit on the nose with a more specific red fruits as it opened. I also recognized a minerality that made me wonder for the first time what soil the vines were grown in; volcanic, rocky?

About 40 minutes after decanting its light texture gave flavors of plum, cherry and strawberry on the palate along with a hint of earthiness and bitterness.  I believe the slight bitterness may be due to the wines youthfulness; 2011 vintage. A little maturity should balance this out nicely.

Also noted were nice slow-moving legs on the glass and a delicious long finish on this beautifully colored, garnet with a hint of purple/violet Pinot Noir.  I am looking forward to seeing what happens with the second bottle I have in my wine cellar [yes, still the guest room] long down the road when I have a 2nd taste. Well, I say long down the road but that could actually be next week 🙂  I hereby promise to put the second bottle in my SAVE pile in the hopes I will be able to hold out. So far so good with others; I actually do have some bottles I have now been holding for a year. A year seems to be my record though….

Final note: Would I drink this wine again; YES. Would I serve it to friends and guests; YES. Would I buy some more; YES. Would I go out my way to buy this wine……this is where I arrive at the proverbial fork in the road. I would consider it a very good everyday wine should I have it available.  But, there are so many other good to great wines even at this price point, that the adventurer in me would want to keep discovering.  SALUD!

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8 responses »

  1. Did you know that Chilean vines, during the Phyloxerra epidemic of the mid to late 19th century, were untouched by the disease because of the countries geography, as you have mentioned above. They still have French vines that pre-date the Phyloxerra epidemic as cuttings were transported before the the outbreak which destroyed much of Europe’s vineyards,

  2. I’m inpressed that you have managed to cellar some wines for a year. Every time I put something in my “cellar,” it comes back up a week later 😉 It’s so hard to resist…

    • Thanks for the visit and comment. Yes, I am really excited about the wines coming out of Chile. Looking forward to my Wines of South America class tonight! Also, I’ll be visitng NJ in June so I am looking forward to checking out store inventories. It’s the little things in life that entertain me 🙂
      Regards,
      Ernest.

  3. Pingback: Pinot Noir Smackdown September 6 2012 – Concannon 2010 Selected Vineyards Pinot Noir « Whine And Cheers For Wine

  4. Pingback: Celebrating Holidays or Better Yet Every Day! | Whine And Cheers For Wine

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