Category Archive: Chilean Wines

Chilean Chardonnay – Llai Llai

Posted on December 2, 2011

Llai Llai Chardonnay Bio Bi Valley 2009

I recently returned from a trip to Chile.  While I was there, I had the opportunity to taste wines from a number of appellations, and I learned that things are changing.  Previously, Chile has been known for producing a high quality wine at a low price.  They were producing high yields in as many regions as they could.  I understand their reasoning was to enter the American market at a low price.  This smart strategy gained the world’s attention, and now we have learned: Chile has much more to offer!

Over the last decade, there has been a shift in wine making, specifically the wine makers.  We have seen an increase in foreign, as well as younger, wine makers.  Proud of their terroir, these new players are more forward thinking and turned their focus to the
farming process, specifically the soil and climate conditions.  Plots of land are selected based on how suitable they will be for a specific grape.  This makes for a superior bottle of wine.

Today’s feature is LLAI LLAI Chardonnay from the Southern region,
Bio Bio.  The Bio Bio Valley is gaining more attention for its cool
climate and ability to produce high quality Pinot Noir and
Chardonnay.  This wine is hand harvested from a single vineyard at Miraflores Estate.  It goes through 30% fermentation in French oak and 100% malolactic, which is helpful because the cooler climate
increases the acidity.  It is rich and crisp with subtle hints of apple and pear.  More intriguing, however, was the full bodied mouth feel and the fresh raciness.  Delicious on its own, the LLAI LLAI
Chardonnay is better paired with fresh Abalone or Corvina.  This
featured wine is a win win–great quality at a great price!

Retails $13

Prime Cru $8

Click here for more information on Prime Cru Wine Club

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Best of Chile, DeMartino’s Marcelo Retamal

Posted on November 10, 2011

Marcelo Retamal of DeMartino and Felipe Tosso of Ventisquero

Sometimes we can go searching for the best and never find it. We can spend hours and days and years trying everything we can just to make sure that we don’t miss the best.  Well on my recent trip to Chile, I wanted to find the best. I knew I had 10 days to travel and taste through dozens of vineyards and hundreds of wines.  The journey was going to start in Santiago with a short seminar/introduction on the terroir of Chile given by Marcelo Retamal. Marcelo Retamal is the wine maker for DeMartino. Sure enough, on the first day I got to try some of the best.