Chile | Aconcagua
Located 40 miles north of Santiago (Chile's capital city), Aconcagua is one of the country's five principal wine regions and is composed of four minor wine districts; Casablanca Valley, Aconcagua Costa, Aconcagua Valley and San Antonio Valley. The Casablanca Valley takes its name from the commune of Casablanca and vines were first planted here in the mid-1980s during the revitalisation of the Chilean wine industry. Casablanca quickly became known for its white wines, most notably Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, as well as Pinot Noir, which thrives in its cooler climate. Although the valley is located at 33°S, much closer to the Equator than any European vineyard, viticulture here is possible because of the cooling influence of the Pacific Ocean, in the shape of cool morning fog and greater cloud cover than is found elsewhere in the north of Chile.
The Aconcagua Costa wine region came to fruition in 2012, after Viña Errázuriz’s longstanding quest to establish the coastal section of the Valle de Aconcagua. Located just 12 kilometres from the Pacific Ocean the region benefits from the cooling influence of the sea and combined with the unique terroir of the surrounding hills is an ideal area for growing Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Syrah. The wines produced here are very elegant, with extraordinary aromatic intensity, tremendous freshness and crisp acidity.
The Aconcagua Valley region takes its name both from the province where it is located, San Felipe de Aconcagua, and also from the Aconcagua mountain, the highest peak in the Andes at 6,956 meters (22,828 feet). The snow-capped peak of Aconcagua and the surrounding mountains delivers essential melt water to the valley below. This small wine growing region has become renowned for its red wines, which have earned international acclaim, with Vina Errázuriz’s “Seña” placing ahead of both Château Lafite and Château Margaux in blind tasting held in Berlin in 2004, a milestone for the Chilean wine industry.
The San Antonio Valley is a new up-and-coming wine region located 62 miles west of Santiago, very close to the sea and south of Casablanca. As with other Chilean wine regions its proximity to the cooling effect of the Pacific Ocean allows for the production of very fine wines. The San Antonio Valley is divided into four small sub-regions: Leyda, Lo Abarca, Rosario, and Malvilla.