Tarapaca Chardonnay 2001
Viña Tarapacá was founded in 1874, in the heart of the Maipo Valley. Our mission is to preserve the seal of high quality behind a wide range of wines focused on reds, today present in more than 60 countries worldwide. Tarapacá is part of the VSPT Wine Group, the second largest wine exporter and the first within the national fine wines market. The vineyard is located in the Maipo Valley, the most traditional and prestigious valley in Chile for premium red wine production. It is a 2.700 hectares property, with only 611 planted with vineyards. The Mediterranean climate fosters a warm, dry growing season, allowing for wines with big body, mature tannins and medium acidity. The soil is of volcanic origin with medium depth and mainly angular stones. Our wines begin with the most appropriate soil selection that will match the needs of each varietal to best respect its characteristics. The vineyards are properly managed with techniques that include determining the correct crop load per vine, irrigation methods, trellising style, and vigor management. This care and dedication continues in the winery, with the enthusiasm and devotion of our winemakers in every step of the vinification process, from reception to fermentation and aging, in order to produce high quality, complex, and well-balanced wines. Tarapacá wines display their maximum potential, not only in Isla de Maipo vineyards, within Maipo Valley, but also in other valleys. Our winemaking team continuously seeks out new lands in distant valleys where the different varieties best express their natural characteristics. Our winemaking philosophy is aimed at making wines that faithfully reflect Chile’s tremendous soil and climate conditions for grape growing. Our winemaking team is committed to taking maximum advantage of the soil conditions, topography, and climate from each one of the different vineyard blocks for the greatest expression of the grapes.
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.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.