Relatively new in Chile is the Casablanca appellation, one of the two appellations of origin (the other being the appellation of Aconcagua) located in the Aconcagua Valley, some 75 kilometers (47 miles) west of the city of Santiago and 27 kilometers (17 miles) from the Pacific Ocean. The first vines were planted in the valley in the 1980s, and today there are some 3852 hectares (9520 acres) of vineyards, the majority planted to Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc although there are 425 hectares (1050 acres) of Pinot Noir. The valley is surrounded by mountains, but due to its proximity to the ocean there is much maritime influence. The ocean breezes maintain a cool climate with morning fog, and the wide diurnal variation favors a long period of ripening of the grapes. Harvests occur later than in the majority of Chilean valleys, from mid-March to the end of April. Because of this, grapes like Chardonnay and Pinot Noir produce crisp and elegant wines with a high concentration of fruit flavors.
Casa Lapostolle was founded by Alexandra Marnier Lapostolle and her husband, Cyril de Bournet, in 1994. The Marnier Lapostolle family are the owners of the company that produces the famous Grand Marnier liqueur. Alexandra’s great-grandfather created the original recipe for this world-renowned liqueur. The family traces its roots to France’s Loire Valley, and still today are owners of the Château de Sancerre, which produces wines in the Sancerre appellation from the Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc grapes. The Casa Lapostolle winery, located in Chile’s Colchagua Valley, produces various wines including the iconic Clos Apalta. The winery manages its vineyards both biodynamically and organically. This serves to not only maintain a healthy environment but also to preserve the distinct terroir of each vineyard. Currently, the winery maintains vineyards in three Chilean valleys: Casablanca, Cachapoal, and Colchagua.
A deep and intense purple color. On the nose there are notes of black and red cherries, jam, violets, milk chocolate, tobacco and vanilla. Like the color the aromas are intense and profound, and the complexity of this young wine demonstrates is potential in becoming an elegant and even more complex wine with five more years of ageing. On the palate the wine shows its power and youth with intense notes of black and red berries and a rich streak of vanilla. This wine deserves 30 – 45 minutes of oxygenation in a decanter before serving.
- Winery: Casa Lapostolle
- Wine: Pinot Noir Cuvée Alexandre
- Vintage: 2008
- Country: Chile
- Appellation: Atalayas Vineyard*, Casablanca Valley
- Type: Dry red wine
- Composition: 100% Pinot Noir
- Ageing: 20 months in French oak barrels, 86% new
- Alcohol: 14.5%
- Format: 750 ml
- Closure: Natural cork
- Optimum consumption: through 2018
- Suggested pairing: Roasted veal or lamb with a complex sauce
- Website: http://www.casalapostolle.com/