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Valle de Casablanca

Overview

Roughly fifty miles west of the capital city of Santiago, the Casablanca Valley is a new and rapidly expanding wine sub-region. Fairly cool and coastal, this area has provided Chile with an excellent location to produce exciting, high-quality white wines, an area in which the country has not traditionally excelled.

History

Viticulture began in the Casablanca Valley in the 1980s, making this sub-region the youngest major wine area in Chile. It served a leading role in turning around Chile’s reputation for white wines, and made the country famous for fruity Sauvignon Blanc. As the main highway from Santiago to Valparaíso cuts through the valley, Casablanca’s wine tourism industry has expanded along with its production.

Geography

Located northwest of Santiago, along the highway to the coastal city of Valparaíso.

Temperature

Cool and somewhat coastal, especially compared to the hotter regions of Aconcagua Valley and the Maipó Valley. Casablanca Valley also picks up more moisture than the inland valleys.

Topography

Vineyards grow along the valley floor, and have spread into the surrounding hills as well.

Terroir

The soil types vary extensively. Sandy loam, clay, and gravel are all present. Fertility is generally low, which allows for the production of high-quality wines.

Important Varietals

Chardonnay :Classy, fruity, and good.

Sauvignon Blanc :The most well known variety of the region.

Pinot Noir :The valley’s only popular red variety can be quite elegant and smooth.