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Chile was once described as a viticultural paradise, and it’s certainly true that this long, thin country has a huge diversity of terrains in which different types of grapes can find their sweet spot.
Much of the noise concerning South American wine in recent times has come from the Malbecs grown on the opposite side of the Andes, but Chile has plenty of wines that can more than hold their own against the Argentineans, including some surprisingly good Malbec.
No, we’re not going to cover Malbec in this tasting, but we will be looking at a grape which, while not unique to Chile, has certainly established its home here, namely Carmenère. We’ll also try some Cabernet Sauvignon to see if we can see why several famous Bordeaux producers have established vineyards here. And we’ll begin with a Viognier, a grape from France’s Rhône Valley which performs especially well here
I would recommend buying in advance:
A classic South American accompaniment would be empanadas, but if you can’t find any of these excellent savoury pastries (think baby Cornish pasties), go for Middle Eastern flavours as both the Viognier and the Carmenère will work well with aromatic/spicy foods. And lay in a lump of good Cheddar or mature Gouda for the Cabernet.
One ticket will entitle everyone in your household to attend this tasting – make sure you have enough wine to go around!