Often described as a "viticultural paradise" Chile has spent the past 20 years learning from the lessons provided by the USA and Australia, combining them with classic, European inspired techniques.
Chile’s geographic barriers—the Atacama Desert to the north, the Andes Mountains to the east, the Patagonian ice fields to the south, and the Pacific Ocean to the west—make Chile a veritable agricultural island. Together they help maintain healthy conditions and protect vineyards against pests and disease. And with a geography as diverse as Chile’s, you can be sure that they are capable of producing extraordinary wines. Indeed this combination of beneficial natural barriers and a benevolent Mediterranean climate make sustainability and organics a logical choice in Chilean winegrowing. In fact, Chile has some of the largest organic vineyards in the world.
With so much geographic variety, the Chilean landscape also offers a vast mosaic of terroirs and soil types. Soils are healthy, well-drained, and have a variety of origins (alluvial, colluvial, fluvial, etc.) and textures (loam, clay, sand, silt). Despite the relatively dry atmospheric conditions, abundant water for irrigation flows from the eternal ice caps of the Andes Mountains that tower all along Chile’s eastern border.
Chile has just the right conditions for a very broad range of grape varieties, from crisp Sauvignon Blanc, lush Chardonnay, zippy Riesling or fragrant Viognier to vibrant Pinot Noir, juicy Merlot, spicy Syrah, classic Cabernet Sauvignon, their very own Carmenere. Modern Chile has carved out a niche for well-crafted value-for-money wines and is also gaining a reputation for fine, age-worthy classics that match the greatest wines of Europe.