Best recent white wines of Chile - Descorchados 2020/2021

Tasted August 18, 2021 by br_winelover with 5 views

Introduction

Three wines were tasted single blind, from completely different terroir in Chile:
2016 Viña Aquitania Sol de Sol Chardonnay (Malleco)
2018 Concha y Toro Amelia Chardonnay (Limarí - Quebrada Seca)
2019 Errazuriz Las Pizarras Chardonnay (Aconcagua Costa)

Flight 1 (3 notes)

White
2016 Viña Aquitania Chardonnay Sol de Sol Chile, Malleco Valley
93 points
93pts. I was able to recognize this single blind without a problem. On its own this would have been very nice, but it took third place because its competition was so good.

Malleco is the southernmost terroir of the three wines of this tasting - it's more than 600 km south of Santiago. Here the weather is cold not due to maritime influence, but because it it so farther south. And there is no doubt this is a cool-climate chard, although the fruit seems to be more mature than usual in this bottle.

I have tasted the 2013 version of this wine, and this one is a bit more tropical - I got notes of peach syrup, honey, caramel and "fleur de sel" (salt flower), with some toffle on the nose. Creamy, but with good freshness and balance - this is really nice to drink. Could use a longer finish, but it is good enough. I could drink this all night long.
White
2019 Errazuriz Chardonnay Las Pizarras Chile, Aconcagua Valley
94 points
94-95pts. Bottle #414. This Chardonnay comes from a vineyard close to Pacific Ocean composed of slate, which imparts it with excellent minerality and lift. It was the second best wine of this tasting, because the Amelia was even more complex.

But this is definitely no slouch - actually, it seems much akin to a "old-world Chardonnay" than the Amelia, which is definitely "new-world" in style. This Las Pizarras would easily fit in a flight of Chablis, for example, while the Amelia has the profile of a great California Chardonnay. Here we have tons of citrus notes like Sicilian lemon and lime, complemented by green pineapple, green apple, and unripe passion fruit. It is light on its feet, long, and refreshing - a true image of its terroir. Beautiful stuff, with or without food. Really glad I have more.
White
2018 Concha y Toro Chardonnay Amelia Quebrada Seca Limarí Valley Chile, Limarí Valley
95 points
95pts. The winner of this small tasting. Single blind I thought this was the Las Pizarras, and vice-versa. I could not at first believe the Amelia would be so good, because past vintages weren't. But it seems that its new vineyard at Limari Valley, called Quebrada Seca, imparted this wine with complexity and length it did not possess when it was sourced from the Casablanca Valley. Then again, Quebrada Seca is a really special vineyard, perhaps top three in the southern hemisphere for white wines.

This Amelia is definitely new-world, though. On the nose, there were notes of peaches, white flowers, and spices - I could smell that all day long. On the palate it was more complex - here I got lots of tropical and subtropical fruit, with pineapple, lemon, lime, orange peel and kiwi notes. Some mint too. Excellent salinity and spiciness, long, and mouth-coating. A must have if you enjoy Chilean wines.

Closing

The 2018 Amelia was the winner by a whisker, since the 2019 Las Pizarras was also excellent. The 2016 Sol de Sol was a respectable third.

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