Flat out delicious, with some creaminess to the texture, tempered by good freshness to the light tropical and white orchard fruit flavors. There’s also a touch of salinity into the mix that adds that extra degree of complexity leading to a finish with excellent length. Seldom do we see the really notable Chardonnays that have a uniqueness or quality factor to them for anywhere near $20 on the shelf. There are always exceptions to the rule and we have just found a great exception.
94 pts Vinous June 2022
The 2020 Chardonnay Cordillera de los Andes from the Talnay vineyard in Limari was aged in 50% French barrels. Pale yellow in color. The nose offers notes of pineapple and apple, hints of acacia, oak, hazelnuts and whiffs of praline and iodine. In the mouth, this presents good fat and a smooth, slightly creamy flow with heightened freshness and a little salinity. A long-lasting wine.
Our search for enclaves where we could produce exceptional wines led us to the Limarí Valley, where Chardonnay takes on a very distinctive expression. The area’s cool climate and calcareous soils had the potential of producing Chile’s finest Chardonnays.
The vineyard lies in the Tabalí area of Ovalle county in Limarí Valley specifically Limari Costa Valley according to the newly zoned winemaking areas. Here, as in Elqui, the climate is the predominant wine-quality factor: the cold temperatures of the maritime climate make for cool conditions that produce highquality Chardonnay.
Based on bioclimatic indicators, the area where the vineyard is located can be described as extremely arid, with a temperate/warm climate and very cold nights. In the mornings, the area is covered in a sea fog known as Camanchaca, which keeps the early part of the day cloudy and cool. The snow that accumulates in the Andes Mountains during the winter is more important in terms of replenishing this area’s water reserves than annual rainfall.
Peach and lychee. Fresh on the palate, with juicy acidity, and a briny streak that is the hallmark of Limarí’s calcareous soils.