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The first Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon, the premium wine of 1987 that brought fame to the company, was concentrated and complex and became an immediate success. This was the first ever premium Chilean export wine and it opened for Montes and for Chile, a path other wineries quickly followed. In 1996 Montes developed the stately “M” (a classic Bordeaux style blend) the first ultra-premium wine of Chile. An entry level line called the Classic Series was introduced in 1999. The Alpha “M” was followed by another soon to become cult-wine, the Montes Folly in 2000 (100% Syrah), and finally, in 2003, the first Chilean Carmenère, the Purple Angel. When Montes began (as Discover Wine Ltd.) there were only fourteen wineries exporting from Chile; today the Chilean central bank has over two hundred registered wine exporters. Montes wines are mainly aimed at exports (94% of its entire production) to over seventy-five countries in five continents.
2008 Montes Sauvignon Blanc, Classic Series, Casablanca Valley
The wine was fermented in stainless steel allowing no oak contact. It has attractive tropical fruits and grassy notes owing to the cool Casablanca climate. It is a fresh, crispy light, wine to be enjoyed in its youth.
2008 Montes Chardonnay, Classic Series Curico Valley
This wine is fermented 60 % in casks and 40 % in stainless steel, with only half allowed to proceed through malolactic fermentation. The process is carried out under controlled temperature conditions to maintain the fruity aromas. Its aroma blends hints of butter and vanilla with tropical fruits including banana. It is a fresh wine, fruity, with good body and balance, creamy and complex in mid palate, showing a nice elegant finish.
2007 Montes Alpha Chardonnay, Casablanca Valley
The wine was vinified as three different lots using three different strains of selected yeasts: “D”, Montrachet and native. Fermented and aged in French oak barrels for 1 year, 40% of the wine underwent malolactic fermentation. The wine remained in its original cask for one year using a monthly batonage to enhance the complexity of buttery flavors and tropical fruit. It is full bodied and creamy in the mid palate. This is one of the few Chilean whites that is ageable.
2007 Montes Merlot, Classic Series, Colchagua Valley
Here is a young Merlot with six months of American oak ageing. It is elegant and refined with a marked fruitiness and softness on the palate despite the spicy black pepper elements. Aurelio Montes decided to blend 15% Cabernet Sauvignon with this Merlot, to better marry with the oak, and give structure and finesse.
2007 Montes Cabernet Sauvignon, Colchagua Valley
The nose is packed with layers of caramel, cinnamon, candy and hints of mint, with a prevalence of fruit over oak. This is a spicy, full-flavored wine, with good body, fruit and firm tannins ending with an engaging, strong finish.
2006 Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon, Colchagua Valley
Considered one of the top Chilean Cabernets, it is aged for 12 months in French oak barrels. It is deep ruby in color with flavors of red fruits, blackcurrant, chocolate and cigar box, in balance with well-integrated oak, specifically, fine grained French Alliers. It is complex in the mouth, full bodied and balanced with a lasting persistence leading to a long finish. Although a superb wine as it is now, it may also be considered for cellaring. The first (1987) version was recently selected among the best ten year old red wines (18th) in the world and the 1990 version was ranked 10th in the world, also by WINE magazine.
2006 Montes Alpha M, La Finca Estate, Apalta Valley, Colchagua
The wine is powerful and elegant with a deep dark red color. Yet it has soft, round, solid tannins framing a distinguished character with aromas of red fruits, cassis and a touch of cedar and cinnamon. It has delightful notes of vanilla and coffee, and a long, lingering finish with a pleasant and harmonious balance of fruit and oak. The “M” is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (80%) for elegance, Merlot (5%) for softness, Cabernet Franc (10%) to add harmony and Petit Verdot (5%) for austerity. The Petit Verdot adds an extra element of complexity by linking all the other grapes. The structure of this wine will keep it for over 20 years.
2006 Montes Purple Angel, Apalta and Marchigue Vineyards
Carmenère was rediscovered in Chile only in 1993, after being believed extinct since phylloxera hit Bordeaux, its original home, around 1880. The wine has a distinctive deep purple color with delicate hints of chocolate and cigar box aromas. The wine is a blend of 92% Carmenère and 8% Petit Verdot from the Colchagua Valley. The Carmenère from Apalta adds sophistication and subtlety to the blend, providing chocolate, vanilla and tobacco aromas, as well as the combination of dark fruit flavors and the spiciness typical of the variety. The grapes from the Marchigue estate provide potency and color to the wine creating a fine balance of power and elegance. The blend is ultimately enhanced with Petit Verdot to provide structure and at the same time flavors of wild black berries. It is full bodied, with a generous amount of ripe tannins giving grip and depth to this lovely wine.