Chilean Wine Regions

July 15, 2011 § 9 Comments

Geographically Chile is a long narrow country boardered by the Andes Mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west.  Chile’s climate is dominated by the icy cold waters of the Humboldt Current flowing up along the coast from Antarctica when the reach the northern coast it produces a garua (fog) but no rain making the Atacama Desert in the north of Chile the driest place on earth.

In the central valley cool breezes from the Humboldt Current penetrate the inland while at night the cold air desends from the snow capped Andes. Together these influence create the perfect mediterrian-like climate similar to that of California or Bordeaux France.  Chile has warm dry summers and cold rainy winters that grapes love.

Chile’s appellation system, known as its Denomination of Origin is divided as follows:

Region: Coquimbo
Sub-Region: Elqui
Sub-Region: Limari 
Sub-Region: Choapa

Most of the grapes in the Coquimbo region are produced for Pisco, however in recent years new irrigration has seen the area produce reds like Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. Whites from Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.

Region: Aconcagua
Sub-Region: Aconcagua
Sub-Region: Casablanca
Sub-Region: San Antonio
Zones: Leyda, Lo Abarca

The region is noted for its Cabernet Sauvignon other wines of note are Merlot, Syrah, Carmenere and Chardonnay.

Region: Central Valley
Sub-Region: Maipo
Sub-Region: Rapel
Zone: Cachapoal
Zone: Colchagua
Sub-Region: Curico
Sub-Region: Maule

Region: Southern Regions
Sub-Region: Itata
Sub-Region: Bío Bío
Sub-Region: Malleco

Southern Chile is home to hearty reds as well as crisp white wines from the Bio Bio region incluing Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Riesling and Chardonnay.

With the majority of the wineries in the Central Valley we’ll continue with wineries, their wines and characteristics into the outter regions and the central valley.

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