Region: D.O Puemo, Cachapoal Valley – Chile
Cost: $25 (SRP)
Winemaker’s Notes: Striking yet elegant aromas of ripe dark fruits, spices, and black pepper are synonymous with Puemo’s distinctive terroir. Oak aging lends delicious chocolate and vanilla notes to this voluptuous wine with sweet, round tannins and a long, elegant finish.
My Review: I like to grill year round, but it’s much easier (and warmer) this time of year. While there are lots of wines that go well with a variety of grilled meats, there’s something to be said about a nice robust red that pairs well with a perfectly cooked steak.
Carmenere is a great grape for just such an occasion, bringing a balance of bright berry notes and rounder pepper notes that compliment a lot of grilling. It was with that inspiration that I took to the grill over Memorial Day weekend and threw a steak on the grill and opened up the 2016 Marques de Casa Concha Carmenere.
In the glass the wine was an inky purple color. On the nose I picked up bright fruit notes, while in the mouth I got green pepper and berry at the front, with a smooth mid-palate that lead into a nice clean finish. Paired with a perfectly cooked ribeye (seriously, I nailed this one) it was a great.
I really liked this wine because while it paired well with the food, the smooth mid-palate and cleaner finish made it really easy to sip on after the food was gone; there’s a place for food wines, but I’m always on the look for wines that can seamlessly move from pairing with food to just enjoying by themselves – the 2016 Marques de Casa Concha Carmenere delivered on that front.
Editor’s Note: I received this wine as a free sample for review.