A Wine Lover's Weekly Guide To $10 Wines - A Cabernet Sauvignon From Chile's Central Valley

     We have reviewed many Chilean wines, most of them inexpensive, and lots of Cabs. Today's offering comes from the major wine producing area of Chile's Central Valley. It stems from the Lontue Valley some 200 kilometers (about 125 miles) south of Santiago, the national capital. The Korta family has been in the wine business since 1998. Their vineyards occupy 120 hectares (a tad under 500 acres). You might want to visit their web site (the company name is Bodega y Vinedos Korta Bucarey Limitada) for lots and lots of information about planting methods and technical management of vineyards. The site also describes the surrounding area, the Sagrada Familia (Sacred Family) Valley, which definitely sounds worth visiting. Korta does lots of reds but only one white, a blend of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Viognier. The companion wine is an Australian Shiraz that just made it into our $15 wine column.

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review were purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed Tierra Salvage Cabernet Sauvignon 2010, 13.5% alcohol about $10.

There were no marketing materials so let's start by quoting the back label. "Origin: This wine is made from the Cabernet Sauvignon grape produced under the excellent microclimatic conditions of the Lontue Valley. Tasting Characteristics: A young wine of ruby color and fruity aroma. Soft, well balanced body, easy to drink, intense. Recommended to accompany seasoned red and white meats. Best served at room temperature (18 degrees C - 64 degrees F)." And now for my review.

At the first sips this wine was very refreshing with nice acidity and dark cherries. The initial meal centered on kube, ground beef covered by ground bulgar jackets swimming in a sour sauce brimming with kale. The Cab was long and fruity, offering virtually no tannins but a touch of chocolate. This wine had power. After I added lots of Louisiana hot sauce the wine soured and lost its edge. When paired with the side salad composed of broccoli shoots, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, and red onions this drink became too sweet and also too acidic.

The next meal was a box of Baked Ziti Siciliano that I covered with grated Parmesan cheese. Now this Chilean was round finely balanced among its tannins, acidity, and fruit, all while offering a touch of chocolate. Fresh strawberries for dessert muted this wine; almost nothing came through.

My final meal started with a so-called pizza appetizer that consisted of cabbage, carrots, and tomato paste in puff pastry. In response the wine was metallic. Its tannins sharpened and the chocolate persisted. Then came the main dish, slow cooked beef stew. Now the libation weakened and its acidity became slightly harsh. The accompanying potatoes sweetened rendered this liquid long and fruity. I tasted mostly dark cherries. The Cab picked up to meet the challenge of a generous portion Louisiana hot sauce on the meat. Final verdict. It all depends whether or not you are looking for a Kosher wine. There just aren't too many Kosher wines of such quality in this inexpensive price range. But if you don't need a Kosher wine you can pass this one by, the pairings are too hit and miss.

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Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten computer and Internet books, but definitely prefers drinking fine wine. He teaches computer classes at an Ontario French-language community college. His global wine website  www.theworldwidewine.com  features a weekly review of $10 wines. Visit his Italian wine website  www.theitalianwineconnection.com .

Posted on 2013-08-03, By: *

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Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.

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