The Chilean Vina Mar estate has been run by Domaines Barons de Rothschild since the 80s. Originally under the direction of Lafite Rothschild’s technical director in Bordeaux, it is now a local team which makes a range of wines from the Colchagua Valley, Chile’s premier red wine appellation.
I’m a big fan of cousin Mouton Rothschild’s Chilean joint project with Concha y Toro, Almaviva, so I suppose my expectations were rather high for Vina Mar as well. At just under 10 Euro however, I suppose Vina Mar is actually more comparable to Mouton’s Escudo Rojo range. In any case, I was looking forward to this bottle, if not for the Rothschild name, simply because I hadn’t had a Chilean wine in some time, and the current weather has me craving memories of the South American sun!
A solid wine. It offered everything I was hoping for and left me satisfied, not overwhelmed, but happy with what this bottle delivered: nice, ripe fruit with the typical nose of crème de cassis (these usually point me towards Chilean Cabernet in blind tastings); a good, firm posture showing its aristocratic French roots, but without sacrificing its South American charm; and finally a hint of ripe pepper for the varietal touch, like a cool shade on a hot summer day. And that’s just the feeling I was looking for!