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Miguel Torres Santa Digna Reserve Carmenere 2012

Carmenere from Chile
  • WW89
14% ABV
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14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Cherry color with fine mulberry aromas and balsamic touches ofeucalyptus that culminates in a sublime hint of mandarin oranges.Elegant on the palate with sweet tannins and nuances of leather and spices. Its ageing in French oak lends it a pleasant toasted background.

Perfect with veal and beef. A match for all dishes from fish to spicysauces.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 89
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
Staying well within its varietal wheelhouse, the 2012 Miguel Torres Santa Digna Carmenère exhibits red currants and dried herbs. The wine's soft palate pairs it well with rosemary-infused pork tenderloin. (Tasted: November 29, 2017, San Francisco, CA)
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Miguel Torres

Miguel Torres

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Miguel Torres, Chile
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Miguel Torres Chile was founded in 1979 by the Torres family of Spain. Torres has produced wine in Spain since the 17th century. The Miguel Torres Chile winery encompasses more than 400 hectares of wineyards planted in five different properties each with unique climatic characteristics. This enables the winery to cultivate distinct varieties and to allow their intense expressions to develop. Miguel Torres is recognized for introducing new technologies to Chile, which have contributed to the growth of Chilean wines over the past 30 years. As of 2010, Miguel Torres Maczassek, a fifth generation Torres winemaker who moved to Chile with his family in order to maintain the tradition and passion for winemaking that the Torres family has demonstrated throughout the years.

One of South America’s most important wine-producing countries, Chile is a reliable source of both budget-friendly wines and premium bottlings. Spanish settlers, Juan Jufre and Diego Garcia de Cáceres, most likely brought Vitis vinifera (Europe’s wine producing vine species) to the Central Valley of Chile some time in the 1550s. But Chile’s modern wine industry is largely the result of heavy investment from the 1990s.

Long and narrow, Chile is geographically isolated, bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Andes Mountains to the east and the Atacama desert to the north. These natural borders allowed Chile to avoid the disastrous phylloxera infestation in the late 1800s and as a result, vines are often planted on their own rootstock rather than grafted (as is the case in much of the wine producing world).

Chile’s vineyards vary widely in climate and soil type from north to south. The Coquimbo region in the far north contains the Elqui and Limari Valleys, where minimal rainfall and intense sunlight are offset by chilly breezes from the Humboldt Current. While historically focused solely on Pisco production, today this area finds success with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The Aconcagua region contains the eponymous Aconcagua Valley—hot and dry and home to full-bodied red wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot—as well as Casablanca Valley and San Antonio Valley, which focus on Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. The Central Valley is home to the Maipo, Rapel, Curicó and Maule Valleys, which produce a wide variety of red and white wines. Maipo in particular is known for Carmenère, Chile’s unofficial signature grape. In the up-and-coming southern regions of Bio Bio and Itata make excellent Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

Carmenere

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Dark, full-bodied and herbaceous with a spicy kick, Carménère found great success with its move to Chile in the mid-nineteenth century. Far from its birthplace of Bordeaux, Carménère once accompanied Malbec and Petit Verdot as a minor blending grape there. But the variety went a bit undercover, impressing wine lovers until 1994 when many plantings previously thought to be Merlot, were profiled as Carménère. Regardless of what vine variety it actually was, these have proven successful and plantings continue to increase.

In the Glass

Carménère can express a bit of herbaceous character or black pepper but in warm climates or with additional hangtime before harvest, it makes wines reminiscent of blackberry, blueberry and dark plum, with rich and savory notes of chocolate, coffee, smoke and soy sauce.

Perfect Pairings

Carménère makes a great match for a hearty steak or barbecued red meat. It can also work well with white meat when prepared with a mole sauce or spice rub.

Sommelier Secret

Perhaps Carménère’s herbal character can be explained in part by familial relations—due to the strange nature of grapevine breeding, Carménère is both a progeny and a great-grandchild of the similarly flavored Cabernet Franc.

SWS175570_2012 Item# 140108