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Siegel Special Reserve Carmenere

We have an initial parcel of this wonderful wine which we can offer to members for only

£9.00 per bottle

Once this has sold out we will be able to source more of the wine at its normal price of £11.35

Siegel Special Reserve Carmenere

West of the Andes - Carmenère country

In our two-and-a-half-year odyssey through the world’s wine regions we have rather neglected South America, featuring only three Argentinian wines and just one from Chile.  So this month both our wines come from the slopes of the Andes – one from each side.
West of the Andes lies Chile, and this red wine is made from its signature grape: Carmenère.  Originally from Bordeaux but almost extinct there today, Carmenère was long believed to be Merlot by Chilean growers.  It looks a lot like Merlot, and it certainly tastes like a Bordeaux grape.  When the truth came out in the late 90s, dismayed Chilean producers suddenly found themselves sitting on by far the largest plantings of this obscure variety in the world.
It proved to be a blessing in disguise.  The international grapes were about to suffer a backlash, and Merlot in particular.  Meanwhile, lesser-known local varieties became cool, as wine enthusiasts sought out new flavours and demanded wines with a sense of place
Carmenère is found all over Chile, but the best examples tend to come from Colchagua Valley where the Siegel family produce this one.  Deep and dark, it shows off the grape’s Bordeaux origins with a huge blackcurranty nose filled with spices, dark chocolate and subtle smoky oak, mouthfilling blackberry and blackcurrant fruit, and a long spicy finish.

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The tannins on this are so ripe and smooth that it doesn’t absolutely require food.  But it would be a shame to pass up its obvious suitability for big hunks of barbecued beef.  If the weather doesn’t oblige, meaty or mushroomy stews will also work really well.  Those big flavours and soft tannins make it great partner for spicy dishes; try it with chilli.
This is a big red that should be served at the full 18°C.  But as I write this in an end-of-June heatwave that’s substantially below room temperature.  Unless you have somewhere cool to stash your pouch you may need to give it 30 seconds in the fridge before pouring.
This wine smelled slightly reductive when I opened the bottle, though so slightly that I didn’t notice it until the second pour.  If you’re opening a bottle you should aim to decant it: ten or fifteen minutes should be enough.

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Colchagua Valley
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