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Flat front label of wine

Montes Purple Angel Apalta Vineyard Carmenere 2008

Carmenere from Chile
  • RP93
  • WE91
  • WS90
15% ABV
  • JS99
  • JS98
  • WW96
  • WS93
  • RP92
  • JS97
  • WE92
  • WS91
  • W&S91
  • JS95
  • WS93
  • W&S92
  • WE92
  • JS97
  • WS93
  • RP91
  • RP94
  • WS91
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15% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Distinctive flavors of intense blueberry, blackberry and chocolate. Montes Purple Angel is layered, structured, and balanced. Intense purple in color, this wine has distinctive and delicate hints of chocolate and cigar box aromas. The Carmenère grapes from the Apalta estate provide elegance, spiciness, and dark fruit flavors. The Petit Verdot, also from Apalta, adds structure along with the wildness of black berries. Finally, the Carmenère from Marchigue –a cooler area – adds spicy and lively notes. This wine is full bodied, with a considerable amount of ripe tannins that bestow grip and structure to this lovely wine.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The Montes icon wines begin with the 2008 Purple Angel, a blend of 92% Carmenere and 8% Petit Verdot sourced from yields of less than 2 tons/acre and aged for 18 months in new French oak. It has become one of the benchmarks for what can be achieved with Carmenere. Notions of sandalwood, exotic spices, incense, a hint of chocolate, blueberry, and black currant set the stage for a dense, rich, voluptuous, structured wine that is all about pleasure. This lengthy offering will benefit from another 3-4 years of cellaring and will provide prime drinking from 2015 to 2023.
WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Superripe and potent Carmenere from Montes, with coconut, prune, Port and baked cherry aromas. Calling it powerful is an understatement; it's piercing and penetrating, with wild blackberry, coffee and bitter chocolate flavors. Toast and espresso darkness rule the finish. Drink now through 2014.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Dark and ripe, with well-integrated espresso and toast notes running through the blackberry, currant and dark licorice core. The solid, fleshy finish has nice pepper and cassis hints. Carmenère and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2012. 2,050 cases imported.
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Montes

Montes

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Montes, Chile
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With the release of the first Montes Alpha wine back in 1988, Montes became one of the first premium wineries of Chile. Their premise, a clear belief that Chile had an untapped potential as a producer of quality wines, made them a benchmark for other wineries to follow. Its original four partners' total involvement and the continuous help of the angels that decorate their labels was key to their success. Two decades later, Montes is the fifth most important winery of Chile where Aurelio Montes continues leading the winemaking area with the same passion as the first day. Hard work and total focus on quality has led Montes to be one of the most successful and respected quality-driven wineries in Chile as they continue pioneering and breaking new grounds in wine.

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.

RRM75874_2008 Item# 110058