Chardonnay, 2021. Fuego Austral

Chardonnay, 2021. Fuego Austral

Item #: C0922W2
Vintage: 2021
Varietal: Chardonnay
Vineyard/Appellation: Central Valley, Chile
Color: Very Pale
Nose: Bright Apple
Palate: Nuanced Citrus
Finish: Lovely Grip
Rating: 96
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now thru 2024/Seafood, Shellfish/13% Alcohol by Volume

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  • Description
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While Argentina was making its name with Malbec, the Ventisquero Family decided to make Chile famous for Chardonnay. The winery was founded in 1998 by the Ventisquero's in the heart of Chile's Maipo Valley. They planted grapes in the finest sub-zones in the Maipo Valley, namely Casablanca a Colchagua. In 2019 they won the Best Chilean Winery award by none other than the Berlin Wine Association. We know that the Germans know a thing or two about wine.

They are very involved in the welfare and well-being of the land and the people that work it. It is now certified sustainable, which means they only use what they can re-use to protect the soil and natural habitat around them with undaunting precision. The theory is that saving the land will save themselves. This commitment is carried through in their wine making. For instance, the grapes for our selection took three weeks to pick! That is unheard of in most vineyards. Going through the vineyards many times and only picking the ripest, most perfect grapes is about as expensive a process as there is. But, that's what they do and the result leaves no argument.

This unoaked beauty is nothing less than a standout. After fermentation, the wine was left on the "lees" for four months. The lees are the tiny particles of stem and seeds that were pulverized during crush. They mysteriously add a grip to the wine which accounts for the long finish. Bright green apple and spice is perfect with seafood pasta or smoked salmon.