Baron Philippe de Rothschild Escudo Rojo Reserva Pinot Noir 2019
Pairs well with goat cheese, sole in lemon butter, or carpaccio of scallops.
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Escudo Rojo is an iconic Chilean brand created by Baron Philippe de Rothschild to produce the best wines in each category and market them worldwide. The wines strike a harmonious balance between freshness, fruit, oak, fullness on the palate and ageing potential. In addition to the flagship blended wine, the Escudo Rojo range includes five varietal wines: Carmenere, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. All the wines in the range express a distinctive character, reflecting the expression of its terroir.
Escudo Rojo is the Spanish translation of the German “Rote Schild” meaning Red Shield. In 1999, the encounter between Chilean soil and Bordeaux expertise gave rise to Escudo Rojo, a branded wine worthy of the Baron Philippe de Rothschild name, synonymous with the high standards of a great winemaking tradition. Vines were first introduced into Chile in the 16th century by the Spanish Conquistadors and their religious orders who needed wine to celebrate mass. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay vines were imported from France in the 19th century in order to make finer wines.
Located at Buin-Maipo, 45 kilometers south of Santiago in the famous Maipo Valley, the Baron Philippe de Rothschild Maipo Chile bodega stands in its own 63-hectare (156-acre) vineyard. The wines are made, matured, bottled and packaged at the estate under the supervision of a French winemaker and under the control of an in-house laboratory. For each of its wines, the winery selects the best parcels in Chile’s most highly reputed valleys in order to make wines which consistently combine refinement and character. Regular sources of supply and constant quality are also guaranteed by long-term contracts with partner winegrowers, especially further south, in the Rapel Valley. A rigorous parcel selection procedure has been created, with each parcel being tested for three years in order to ensure that the grapes are of sufficiently high quality to be used to make Escudo Rojo.
A region that has become synonymous with some of the best whites of Chile, the Casablanca Valley is full of dozens of bodegas who either grow fruit here or come from outside to source from local growers for their own white wine programs. The valley runs from east to west, which means that its westernmost vineyards receive the most cooling influence from the reliable afternoon sea breezes. The soils also tend to be heavier in clay in the west, whereas the eastern end of the valley is warmer and its soils are predominantly granitic. Sauvignon blanc thrives here, Chardonnay does well and Pinot noir is not uncommon.
Thin-skinned, finicky and temperamental, Pinot Noir is also one of the most rewarding grapes to grow and remains a labor of love for some of the greatest vignerons in Burgundy. Fairly adaptable but highly reflective of the environment in which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate and requires low yields to achieve high quality. Outside of France, outstanding examples come from in Oregon, California and throughout specific locations in wine-producing world. Somm Secret—André Tchelistcheff, California’s most influential post-Prohibition winemaker decidedly stayed away from the grape, claiming “God made Cabernet. The Devil made Pinot Noir.”