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This article, submitted by Carla Urrunaga, is a participant in the 2015 Guest Bloggers' program sponsored by the Great Wine Capitals Global Network.
For all #winelovers who visit Chile and even more so if they live here, winery tours are a must. More and more wineries offer wine tourism packages every day which allows one to find the ideal visit for each person’s particular interest. If what you’re looking for is to taste different wines with great character and quality, this is the place for you.
Bodegas RE is in Casablanca Valley on the way to Lo Valle. They haven’t been doing wine tours for very long but they’re really doing a good job. Unlike other tours, this tour is made-to-order for each group, no one pushes you, there are no big, noisy groups , allowing you to take your time and enjoy yourself.
The concept of this winery was created by one of the members of the Morande family, who has avoided mass production and is enjoying this project. This “Goliath” of a winery offers original wines of very high quality. Perhaps it’s the result of his particular way of making them. The blends are made with the juice and not at the end of the process like at other wineries. The three main varietals are pinot noir, syrah and carignan. The first two are blended with chardonnay and moscatel. The carignan is blended with syrah and is also bottled as a single varietal, making it a very elegant wine.
The visit begins by checking out the pinot noir vines. There’s not that much to see in July – the vines are dormant at this time of year but it was interesting to see some clusters still on the vine and to observe botrytis, although we were told this is desired to make a good late harvest wine.
We continued to the artisanal liqueur area. It’s obvious that here one creates, invents and has a good time. Fruit is macerated in grape alcohol in large old glass bottles, experimenting and testing maceration times to see what happens.
Then we went to the balsamic vinegar and Etruscan sauce room. This sauce is made with a long, special process and everyone at the winery is excited about it because this is the first time it’s been made in Chile. No one knows if the results will be up to the demanding standard of quality, but the process is being carried out with great care.
Old volcanic clay earthenware jars at Bodegas Re
We go down to the winery where the wine comes alive. Very old jars made from volcanic clay (some grape juice is put there to produce magical flavors and aromas, these jars have a lid and a wooden stick used to stir the liquid), Italian Garbellotto barriques and the original clay jars that ‘Re-create’ the small jars in an extra-large size. We emphasize ‘recreate’ because although the jars are beautiful, here the wine isn’t in contact with the clay. Nonetheless their shape allows the imitation of the dynamic flow of the wine produced in the jars that can't be achieved in cylindrical tanks. Inside the winery there’s a long table and the proper lighting for group tastings. But since there were only two of us, we went upstairs to the wine shop to finish the visit and finally taste the wines.
The shop is perfectly decorated with furniture and antique winemaking accessories, pretty wooden tables and gourmet products from local producers.
Different tastings with varying prices according to the number of wines one wants to try are on offer. We chose the one with three varietals and the guide was kind enough to offer each of us different wines and in this way we were able to try practically all of the wines made at RE. Along with the tasting visitors are offered a tray with bread, cheese, olives and the winery’s own olive oil, making the experience more pleasant.
I won’t describe each wine we tasted but I can say that I was not only pleasantly surprised but also really impressed. Each bottle was totally different and the blends really well made. A luxury, a real pleasure.
The three varietals tasting and guided tour costs 15,000 pesos per person, so the price is reasonable, allowing us to return home with a few bottles of wine and other products from the shop.
More information about the tours at http://bodegasre.cl
Original blog post URL: www.chezcarlita.com