Chile is rising as a source of great Cabernet Sauvignon, made all the better by its generally quite affordable pricing. These three Cabs come from the blue chip regions of Chile, and each cuts a very different profile on the palate. Thoughts follow.
2009 Tabali Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva Maipo Valley – Black- and blueberry notes pervade, with a bittersweet but quite pleasant (and food-friendly) finish. Some perfume dances in and out, both on the nose and the palate, leaving a lasting impression on the tongue. Needs some time in glass before gulping it down. B+ / $15
2011 Sibaris Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva Especial Undurraga Maipo Valley (pictured) – A very friendly, easy Cab. Lots of fruit, with a light woodiness underneath. Raisin character develops with a little time, lending this wine even more sweetness. Not at all the big bruiser that the Tabali is, a quite different expression of Maipo Valley cab. B+/ $13
2011 Santa Carolina Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva Colchagua Estate – Dusty and earthy, again a much different expression of Cab. Drying, with light raisin notes. Some blueberry and violets give this a little more interest than you’d otherwise expect. B+ / $9