|Origin||Chile, Cachapoal Valley|
60% Carmenere, 40% Syrah. This small producer is making fabulous artisan wines which have impressed us so much with their charming shape and feel. Perfectly laden with restrained, poised fruit. There is great concentration to the wonderful spicy, dark red fruit. A really stylish interpretation of what can be done here. Ripe, bold and dark, but well checked by just enough lifting acidity and a nicely structured frame. A delicious partner to hearty flavours - red meat from the pan or the Barbecue or ideal with your roast lamb. L&S (Aug 2019)
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A red wine that’s a blend of the variety that in recent years has become the country’s go-to grape of choice, carménère (60 per cent), and syrah (40 per cent). It’s made from grapes grown on a family-owned estate in Chile’s Cachapoal Valley where the hillside vineyards are cooled by breezes from the Pacific. Aged in oak it has dark fruit and cherry flavours along with the coffee bean notes that characterise the carmenère grape. It’s only lightly filtered, so there may be some natural sediment present.John Clarke(May 2020)
Striking Carmènere fruit, hedgerow and herbal notes with some floral violets. Rounded mouthfeel with sweet fruit, and really nice fine tannins. A nice expression of modern Peumo, not too powerful but has good typicality with some roasted-coffee and fig notes, and a nice floral tinge. Drinking range: 2019 - 2022 Rating: 15.5 Alistair Cooper MW - www.JancisRobinson.com(Dec 2019)
A smart new Chilean blend @Lea&Sandeman. Abolengo is Carmenere+Syrah. 2+2=5. (Twitter)Hugh Johnson(Oct 2019)
Abolengo is our latest discovery in the mountains of Chile's Cachapoal Valley. A 'start-up' microwinery — if not ‘nanowinery’ — formed in 2014 by friends Jamie Ross and Carlos Irarrazaval.
Carlos and his family have been growing high quality red grapes since the mid-1990s, supplying leading Chilean wine producers from their large estate in the Cachapoal Valley (whose history goes back to the wife of Chile’s Spanish Conquistador, Pedro de Valdivia). Jamie, who is British, has a long and close association with Chile, having first worked there in wine in the late 1980s. Cachapoal is one of Chile’s top wine producing regions, with excellent Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. But it is Carmenère, the one-time Bordeaux variety now thriving in Chile — for which the area is best known, particularly in the sub-appellation Peumo, where the vines for Abolengo are located.
With its south-facing vineyards, alluvial and granitic soils, and coastal breezes that both temper the heat and heighten luminosity, the Irarrazaval’s ‘La Rabicana’ Peumo estate has outstanding growing conditions for grapes that go into the Carmenère/Syrah blend. For the white, Chardonnay is sourced from Lontué, 90 km further south in the Curicó Valley, where cool nights follow warm days thanks to air falling from the Andes, creating physiologically well-balanced and expressive grapes.
With the help of consultant winemaker Jorge Gutierrez the small team here are just beginning as producers, lovingly making very small quantities of hand-crafted, authentic wines.
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