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Country: Chile  Region: Valle Central  Grape: Cabernet Sauvignon 

Wine has been made in Chile ever since missionaries introduced vines and wine making in the mid-sixteenth century. However, the modern wine industry began in 1851, when grapes and methods of viticulture and viniculture were imported from Bordeaux. Through an accident of history, this took place the moment before Phylloxera devastated the vineyards of France. Thus, the vines of Chile have never been infected. Moreover, its geographical position protects it from other hazards, as well as giving it optimum growing conditions for successful grape cultivation.

The Valle Central (Central Valley) lies east of Santiago. With the aid of irrigation, viticulture has flourished and production is about half of the nation’s total. One grape that grows successfully is Cabernet Sauvignon, and it is that grape that is used to produce this selection from Bel Vento.

Deep ruby red in color, the aromatic nuances come alive with rich cherry aromas with hints of chocolate and black pepper. The palate presents a medium-structured body, the texture is soft, round and elegant. Flavors of vanilla, ripe red fruit and coffee combine with well integrated tannins. The wine is ready to enjoy now. Serve at room temperature in large goblets with roast beef, lamb chops, braised pork loin and cheeses. The dominant grape in Bordeaux, it is widely planted in California, and is big in Chile, and some of the best comes from Bel Vento! The fruit is small, dark, thick skinned; late-maturing and needs warmth to prosper. It makes wines that are high in tannin, and medium to full bodied. The aroma and flavor is described as black currant or cassis.

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Tracie Burket
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