Did you know vineyards in Chile have been around since the mid 16th century, but actual wineries didn’t pop up until the 1850’s? The difference with Chilean wines is they use the Bordeaux grape for both red and white wines. The best part of the Chilean wines is their price point.
Unfortunately, it’s not easy to locate Chilean wines in the U.S, but I found a few brands in Total Wine and More. Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores carry them, but the one featured in this article has to be ordered and delivered to the store for pickup.
A few weeks ago Total Wine & More featured wines from Chile during one of their tasting events. The two I picked up are Vistamar Brisa Sauvignon Blanc and Vistamar Sepia Cabernet.
Vistamar Brisa Sauvignon Blanc was the best out of the two varieties. It’s a wine that you can drink by itself. It’s refreshing and you can really taste the passion fruit in the wine. You can pair this wine with something light, like a salad or a light appetizer, but as I mentioned this is good just as it is. Try and get the ridiculous amount of snowfall we've had in our region out of your head for a minute. Now, picture yourself sitting on a lounge chair on a shaded patio in late Spring/early Summer sipping on this wine. Doesn't that sound nice...and warm?
Sepia Cabernet is a full-bodied wine and one of those wines that must be paired with food. The blackberry and currant flavors are very strong, which gives it a totally different flavor when it’s not paired with food. Try pairing it with spicy food (Mexican or Thai food), or cheese plate with strong cheeses.
Vistamar Sepia Cabernet – 750ml $9.99 (Total Wine & More)
Vistamar Brisa Sauvignon Blanc – 750ml $6.99 (Total Wine & More), $8.49 (Fine Wine & Good Spirits)
Going to try a few budget friendly Australian wines next. Stay tuned!