Elqui 2016 Carmenere-Syrah-Malbec
ABOUT THE PRODUCER
- The 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.
ABOUT THE WINE
- Most of the Carmenere component in this wine comes from the nearly impossible to farm El Tambo Vineyard which is one of the more intense vineyard sites you’ll find in Chile. Carmenere grapes in El Tambo are harvested in mid-June and are literally the last wine grapes harvested in all of Chile, picked after all of the leaves have fallen to the ground. Steffan calls this his favorite site for Carmenere Chile and he feels lucky to own it.
- Most of the Malbec in the blend comes from the stunningly beautiful Peralillo Vineyard which sits on a moderate slope just below the tallest mountain in the region. These own rooted vines were massal selections from a now retired farmer Steffan met in Maipo some years back. This warm site brings a ripeness and a floral component that you just don’t see from other sites planted to Malbec in Chile.
- Syrah fruit from the cool climate Maiten Vineyard keeps things elegant – It is a rocky, sandy, ancient riverbed sitting 25 miles inland from the Pacific Ocean.
Vintage: 2016 | Wine Type: Red Wine
Varietal: Syrah: 14%, Carmenere: 50%, Malbec: 26%
Origin: Chile | Appellation: Elqui Valley
Elaboration: Very long maturation period in the vineyards due to very cool nights which makes for an oscillation (day/night swings) of nearly 40F. Harvest started April 4th 2013 end ended June 19th. All by hand in 20 kg small crates. Fermentation takes places in stainless steel tanks with temperature controlled jackets to ensure certain temps are not exceeded. Very important to maintain fresh fruit characters in finished wines. Fermentation takes approx.. 12-14 days w/ a total skin contact time of 3-4 weeks depending on lots.
Conservation: 100 % Barrel aged with a mix of New, 1st and 2nd use French, American and Hungarian oak barrels for 24 months.
Winemaker: Steffan Jorgensen
Deep and dark almost creamy nose gives way for black currant, meat, earth and spicy minerals from the Ancient Elqui River bed. Rich and mouth filling with an incredible amount of suave creamy fine grained tannins. Young and brooding but with an incredible smooth and velvety approach. Lingering spice and fruit blends with the more mineral laden flavors of the Micro Terroir of the Elqui Valley. Broad, big and bold but sophisticatedly pleasing!!! If you want value for money this is where its at!!!!!
Production: 5619 cases | Alcohol: 14.0% | TA: 5.4 g/l | Residual Sugar: < 2 g/l | pH: 3.70
PRESS & POINTS
“The paradigm for the future of the Chile’s wine industry.” – Rex Picket, (author of Sideways).
2011 – 90 points, Vinbladet, (Denmark).
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