• Marla

What We Learned About Chile’s Casablanca Valley

Updated: Jul 18, 2020


Chile's Casablanca Valley

Chile’s Casablanca Valley is a well-established wine region and an easy day trip from either Santiago, the country’s capital, or from Valparaiso on the Pacific coast. Because it’s not far from the ocean, it boasts a cooler climate, enabling wineries to grow a wider variety of grapes, including crisp whites that you won’t find elsewhere in Chile.

This area is more used to tourists than some of the other wine regions in Chile, so expect larger crowds and tastings. Bus tours are common in Chile’s Casablanca Valley. You may be grouped with others, even if you’ve booked a private wine tour. This isn’t necessarily a problem (we like meeting people) but it can mean waiting for others to arrive before starting your tour or being rushed to get to the next winery. We had a very nice tour with Stephan of Anclartour Chile.

Emiliana

We first visited Emiliana, an organic and biodynamic winery that hosts a multitude of animals, including chickens, horses, and alpacas. Our guide told us that Emiliana is the largest organic winery in the world. This part of Chile’s Casablanca Valley has a terroir similar to that of California’s Napa Valley. Paula conducted our wine tour of the premises. We then had a tasting on the terrace with a larger group.

Chile's Casablanca Valley

We tasted:

Adobe Reserva 2018, a Gewürztraminer 😊

Novas Gran Reserva 2017, a Viognier 😊+

Signos de Origen 2014, a blend of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre 😊++

Coyam 2017, the winery’s signature wine, a blend of nine grapes and a 96-point James Suckling winner 😊++

Bodegas Re

Chile's Casablanca Valley

We next visited Bodegas Re, a young, family owned winery established by winemaker Pablo Morandé and his children. The winery specializes in wine blends. The vineyard also likes to recreate ancient wine formulations and uses amphora in some of its winemaking. In addition, it produces balsamic vinegar and artisan liquors made with fruit and vodka. We toured the winery with Nicole and then had a tasting outside on the patio, again with another group.

We tasted:

Pinotel, a blend of Pinot Noir and Pink Muscat 2018 ½ 😊

Charddonoir, a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir 2016 😊

Cabergnan, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Carginan 2011 😊+

Casas del Bosque

We then had a great five-course lunch at Tanino, the restaurant of the Casas del Bosque winery. We ate octopus, empanadas, salmon, pasta with cheese, and tenderloin with polenta.

The winery was established in 1993 and specializes in cool climate wines. We didn’t want to rush lunch, so we asked if we could skip the tour and just enjoy the wine tasting. The winery was very accommodating, and we ended up with a private wine tasting in the winery’s cellar with the very funny Enzo. We also ended up meeting winemaker Meinard Jan Bloem.