Wines of Chile: Exploring Chilean Sauvignon Blanc



By Kori ~ May 18th, 2010.

Last week, we had the pleasure to take part in an online Chilean Sauvignon Blanc tasting hosted by Wines of Chile. Sauvignon Blanc is the primary white variety planted in Chile. Eight Chilean winemakers/winery representatives convened in Chile to talk about their wines via video conference to 51 wine bloggers across the United States while Master Sommelier Fred Dexheimer moderated from New York City.

The presenting winemakers/winery representatives included:

They answered questions and shared personal stories on top of discussing their own wines and their love of Sauvignon Blanc in general. Most of the bloggers, including me, were tweeting during the event. If you’d like to review the stream, check out #SBChile.

In addition to tasting wines, I thoroughly enjoy it when I have the opportunity to visit with winemakers and kick the dirt in the vineyards. While my first choice would be to visit in person, I am thankful for the technology that allowed me (and my fellow bloggers) to visit with winemakers on another continent. One of these days I hope to be able to visit Chile so that I can complete the experience and kick the dirt in the vineyards, as well as meet some of these talented winemakers in person.

My favorite wine of the tasting was the 2009 Undurraga T.H. (Terroir Hunter) Sauvignon Blanc from the Leyda Valley. It was very refreshing and had screaming acidity. In fact, it reminded me a lot of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, which I love. The Undurraga is an excellent sipper by itself and also great with food. While we tasted through all eight wines without food during the online event, Wines of Chile had sent a recipe for a shrimp and scallop ceviche that they thought would pair well with the wines. So the next day, we made the ceviche to accompany our dinner of blackened halibut, wild rice, and mixed vegetables and drank the Undurraga T.H. with it. The ceviche and halibut were scrumptious, and the Undurraga really shined with food.

If you have not had Chilean Sauvignon Blanc, I encourage you to give it a try.

Here are the wines we tasted, listed in my personal order of preference:

2009 Undurraga T.H. Sauvignon Blanc (Leyda Valley, Chile): T.H. stands for Terroir Hunter. Pale yellow in color. Very aromatic with grapefruit, melon, and citrus fruits on the nose. More citrus fruits, particularly grapefruit, melon, and a hint of bell pepper come through on the palate. Medium-bodied with screaming acidity. Well-balanced with a long finish. Reminds me of a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $15.99 – $16.99

2009 Santa Rita Medalla Real Sauvignon Blanc (Leyda Valley, Chile): Pale, greenish yellow. Grapefruit, grass, and some green vegetables on the nose; lots of lime, lemon, grapefruit, and some green notes on the palate. Medium-bodied with crisp acidity. Good balance and a long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $19.99

2009 Casa Silva Cool Coast Sauvignon Blanc (Paredones Estate, Colchagua Valley, Chile): Pale, greenish straw yellow. Grapefruit aromas lead to flavors of grapefruit, lime, pineapple, tropical fruits, and toasted nuts. Medium-bodied and very crisp with a slight effervescence. Good balance and a long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 2 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $22.99

2009 Cono Sur Organic Sauvignon Blanc (San Antonio Valley, Chile): Pale yellow in color. Tropical fruits and minerality come through on the nose; more tropical fruits, particularly pineapple, on the palate. Medium-bodied and very crisp with good balance and a long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $13

2009 Veramonte Sauvignon Blanc Reserva (Casablanca Valley, Chile): Pale, greenish straw yellow. Fresh, grassy aromas lead to flavors of lime and melon with a hint of saltiness. Light to medium-bodied with crisp acidity and a long finish.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $10.99

2009 Haras de Pirque Haras Estate Sauvignon Blanc (Maipo Valley, Chile): Pale, greenish straw yellow. Minerality, creosote, and petrol aromas on the nose; minerality and faint citrus notes on the palate. Medium-bodied with crisp acidity and a long finish.
Quality: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: NR (not recommended)
Suggested Retail Price: $12

2009 Ventisquero Queulat Sauvignon Blanc (Casablanca Valley, Chile): Pale, greenish yellow. Minerality and citrus aromas and flavors. Medium-bodied with crisp acidity and a long finish. Very different and not very pleasant.
Quality: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: NR (not recommended)
Suggested Retail Price: $17

2009 Valdivieso Single Vineyard Wild Fermented Sauvignon Blanc (Leyda Valley, Chile): Medium golden yellow in color. Unusual nose with aromas of petrol, kiwi, and honeysuckle. Heavy on the palate; tastes like a hardware store. Medium-bodied and lively with a long finish. A very different style from the others. Not my cup of tea.
Quality: 2 stars (out of 5)
QPR: NR (not recommended)
Suggested Retail Price: $21.99

Full Disclosure: We received these wines as samples.


Filed under: Chilean Wine, Sauvignon Blanc, White Wine, Wine Activities/Events, Wines NOT To Buy (1 & 2 Star), Wines Under $15, Wines Under $20, Wines Under $25

Reader's Comments

  1. Wines of Chile» Blog Archive » Wines of Chile On-Line 3rd Blogger Tasting: Sauvignon Blanc | May 27th, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    [...] Wine Peeps was happy for the opportunity to “kick some virtual vineyard dirt” with the winemakers. [...]

  2. Christian Lee | July 20th, 2010 at 11:07 pm

    we always use grapefruit on our dessert and this is a fruit that is full of antioxidants too.~:,

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