Casas Del Bosque Gran Reserva Carmenere 2022
This wine from a warmer vintage shows an important aromatic and flavor concentration. On the nose, the typically minted notes of the grape combine with floral aromas (violets), denoting an elegant primary expression. On the mouth the weight and volume of the wine is noticeable; it enters the palate and expands giving the sensation of taking all the space available. It is persistent and long, with fine and non-angular tannins.
Ideally served at 60-65ºF, this wine is a favorite with traditional Chilean cuisine featuring onions, sweet peppers and raisins. It also pairs extremely well with savory dishes containing soy sauce and including pork, duck or vegetables. Cheeses with a hint of sweetness such as Gruyere. A winemaker favorite is pork stew cooked with aromatic herbs. Great pairing for mint-based sauces.
The grapes for this wine come from loamy, alluvial, well-drained soils around the Cachapoal river. Upon arrival to the winery, the grapes were destemmed and pressed into stainless still tanks, while also inoculated with selected yeasts. After that they were co inoculated with selected lactic bacteria in order to finish malolactic fermentation. The wine was left to macerate for seven more days for added structure and longevity. After that it is uncovered and pressed, separating different pressed fractions according to quality. During its ten-month ageing process, the wine stays in 10% new American oak barrels, 10% second use French oak barrels, 25% in up to fifth use barrels, 30% in concrete tanks, and 25% in stainless steel. It is then assembled, filtered and bottled, with total production reaching 2,300 cases.
Chilean Carménère has quite some fandom around the world, and for consumers who enjoy this particular variety, it´s all about the earthy notes and spiciness that make this wine so interesting. The most famous area for this grape is the broader Rapel appellation; however, for their Gran Reserva, Casas del Bosque sources the grapes from longtime growers located in the more specific Cachapoal Valley, where the most highly commended and awarded Carménères come from. The 2022 Gran Reserva Carménère in particular comes from Almahue town in the prestigious Peumo appellation. A particularly warm growing season results in a ripe, concentrated wine.
The fruit is sourced from an area called Almahue, long recognized for the quality of its Carménère, and part of the famed Peumo D.O. Planted in the early 1990´s, average temperatures in summer reach 71ºF, and in winter 52ºF. Mean diurnal shifts in March are 63ºF, and yearly rainfall is 315 mm on average, falling mostly between May and September. The crop yields were less than 8 tons/ hectare for this vintage (2.3 tons/acre). The grapes were harvested by hand during the first half of April 2022.