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 Filed as : Regional SpotlightWine TipsChile

Chilling Chilean Results

Jun 2, 2011
Chilling Chilean Results

Chicagoans preferred Chile's wines over some of California's in a blind taste test. Will you?

wine_taste_offIf you were born in the 1970s and were an active consumer by the mid-1980s, there's no question that you remember the Pepsi Challenge. All over the country, Pepsi staged blind taste tests against Coca-Cola in which consumers overwhelmingly preferred Pepsi. There was a twist, though: Pepsi usually won because it's sweeter--which tends to taste better in small, sipped amounts.

What if, however, you matched up wines of similar quality, price and high-level viticultural and production standards? Wines of Chile paired a few Chilean selections against wines from California at our Around the World in 80 Sips tasting in Chicago last week to find out.

Among those who took the time to taste blind and vote, the Matetic EQ Sauvignon Blanc 2009 ($20) from Chile beat out the Frog's Leap Sauvignon Blanc ($20) from Napa. In the Pinot Noir battle, Byron 2009 ($20) from Santa Barbara knocked off Kingston Family Vineyards Tobiano 2009 ($20) from Chile. And in the clash of the Cabernets, Santa Rita Medalla Real Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 ($19) from Chile overtook Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 ($25). So Chile topped California 2 to 1.

But this was only round one. Chile is bringing the challenge to Around the World in 80 Sips New York this November and, this time, all the Chilean wines will be less expensive than the bottles against which they do battle. So confident are Chile's wineries, they believe they can win a 3-0 blind-tasting sweep over selections that cost you more.

Click here to learn more about how to get tickets for Around the World in 80 Sips NYC. And if there's a Chilean wine that you already know for sure delivers the best value in town, share it with us below.

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