Chile, a slender sliver of a country, captured international attention about 20 years ago when it sent out to the world friendly, agreeable wines that sold for under $10. So good were they for their modest price that Chilean imports into the United States leaped from 11 million liters in 1986 to 184 million by 1996.
The high quality of its grapes, soils and microclimates made it clear that Chile had the potential to climb far up the status scale. And since the mid-‘90s, it has done just that.
In this short time, Chile has developed a class of top-echelon wines called Ultra Premium. Based primarily on the varietals that make Bordeaux reds-Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Carmenère, an old Bordeaux grape-these wines are produced in relatively small quantities (4,000 to 14,000 cases per wine rather than 50,000 to 1 million cases for inexpensive wines). Made from grapes grown only in Chile’s prime vineyards, they mature slowly in small French oak barrels for 13 to 20 months with all the care that such aristocratic wines deserve.
Care, however, costs. As these upper-class reds have soared up the quality ladder, so have their prices. Most of them now cost five, six and seven times more than those earlier, simpler exports.
Among the most exceptional Ultra Premiums are Montes Alpha M 1999 ($78), an elegant, concentrated wine, beautifully balanced, with deep fruit flavors and a hint of chocolate in the aroma; and Montes Alpha M 2000 ($78), an exuberant wine brimming with personality and varietal character, satiny in the mouth, delicious in taste. Equally impressive is Almaviva 1999 ($92), a rich, luscious, well-structured wine with intense fruit and a full and textured body.
Other fine examples include Errazuriz Don Maximiano Founder’s Reserve 1999 ($60), a wine with a distinctive perfume in its aroma and a silky mouth feel; Concha y Toro Don Melchor 1999 ($42), a full-bodied, deep-flavored wine, all satin and finesse ($42); and Seña 1999 ($70), a supple, spicy wine with an aroma reminiscent of mint and eucalyptus.
Chile is indeed fulfilling the promise of its potential. And this is only the beginning.
Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts invites travelers to celebrate the holidays at any of its properties in Riviera Maya, Mexico. There is no time like the present for you to experience a stay at one of these luxury resorts.
Considering an autumnal adventure or Thanksgiving trip this year? Well, with walkable cities, cozy pubs and lots of seasonal festivals, the island of Ireland is calling. And if you need more reasons to Press the Green Button and go, take a look and see what awaits you on the Emerald Isle …
After a two-year hiatus from in-person sporting and outdoor recreation events, the seaside, car-free town of Las Catalinas in Guanacaste, Costa Rica, recently announced the return of the annual Tri Las Catalinas, an off-road, multisport triathlon, Feb. 15–18.
Whether you prefer a villa on the beach or an ultra-luxe suite downtown, you’ll find everything you’re looking for in Los Cabos.
Plan a célébration spéciale this holiday season with a stay at a historic French chateau in the Loire Valley. If pipers piping and dancers dancing are part of your dream holiday experience, set your compass for Château de Chambord, where 100 twinkling Christmas trees set a festive tone for Renaissance music and dancing, storytelling, performances, workshops, themed activities and more. Guests can sip mulled wine and nibble on sweet indulgences, or peruse the shops for authentic, artisanal Chambord products crafted from the estate’s own natural resources.
For the 12th consecutive year, Global Traveler recognizes the best of the best in the industry, naming 2022’s Airline of the Year and Hotel of the Year.
Global business travel is making its way back, even as the pandemic and other world events continue to challenge its return. In a recent poll from the Global Business Travel Association, more than four in five respondents (86 percent) from across the industry said they feel more optimistic than they did at the beginning of the year. Business travel bookings, the need to travel to do business and employee willingness to travel are all on the rise.
What a year 2022 has been for travel! It’s not an understatement to say travel rebounded and surged following the pandemic, and airlines, hotels, travel providers and more are ready and waiting to serve the masses returning to the beautiful art of traveling. As such, we celebrate and award those who do it best as we announce the 2022 winners of the GT Tested Reader Survey awards, our 19th year honoring the best of the best in the world of travel. Our countdown to year No. 20 begins now.