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Home Winners > Winners 2015 > NEW WORLD: Carmenère

Winner Details

New World: Carmenère


2015: Gold 2 Silver 1 Bronze 7 Commended 9
2014: Gold 2 Silver 3 Bronze 5 Commended 6


Carmenère in the Sommelier Wine Awards is running more or less parallel to Malbec, but just two or three years behind. It has established itself as a solid ‘two wines on the Gold List’ category, and the judges have no problem in seeing a use for it; the fact that there is usually one sub-£10 Gold and one more expensive is testament to that.

But the grape’s challenge would be to raise the standard across the board. Whereas Malbec, for instance, saw a stack of Silvers this year, the bulge in Carmenère’s entry was in Bronzes and Commendeds instead.

From the Tasting Teams


‘Some had a green side, too much so at times. But some were rounder and showed a little more fruit and will be more enjoyable in the future as the tannin softens.’ Athila Roos, The Arts Club

‘The best have real Carmenère typicity, without the influence of too much winemaking, and there is absolutely a place for good Carmenère on the list, maybe 85%+ blends with perhaps a splash of Syrah – it could make fantastic wines that Rhône lovers might buy, as well as helping people to explore and break out of the Chilean Cabernet and Merlot armlock.’
Martin Lam, team leader

Award winners

Found 19 wines

New World: Carmenère

Anakena, Alwa, Las Cabras Vineyard, Carmenère 2010, Peumo, Cachapoal Valley, Chile

Gold medal winner

'Suave and elegant, with much cassis. This is top-drawer Carmenère with all the bits,' said happy team leader Martin Lam. ‘Intense, punchy, spicy cocktail with gingerbread and evident oaking,’ said fellow team leader Andrea Briccarello, with Michael Moore of Room 24 adding: ‘Nice dark chocolate richness. Given a little more time to age, it will fly.’

£21.00 Bottle Green

Valle Secreto, First Edition, Carmenère 2012, Cachapoal Valley, Chile

Gold medal winner

Striking Carmenère character led Valle Secreto to the Gold-medal podium, with this ripe wine, with its pleasing balance. Luigi Buonanno of Bianco43 highlighted its ‘great nose, quite refined’, adding: ‘The palate is slightly sweet but balanced and with good length.’ ‘Clean and richly textured, with blackcurrant and spiced blackberries, cinnamon and nutmeg,’ said team leader Olivier Marie.

£9.90 EWGA

Luis Felipe Edwards, Gran Reserva, Carmenère 2013, Colchagua Valley, Chile

Silver medal winner

‘Light, with forest fruit and bell pepper flavours, a minty edge and light tannins, medium in body and length,’ said Luigi Buonanno of Bianco43 of this fresh wine with its generous fruit and liquorice notes on the finish. Caroline Brangé of 28°-50° Mayfair added: ‘Peppery, juicy fruits, terrific for the price.’

£8.50 North South Wines

Carmen, Viña Edmara Carmenère 2013, Maipo Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

‘Pleasant fruit on the nose with dandelion floral green notes on the palate and notes of bitter dark chocolate to finish,’ said Michael Moore of Room 24, with team leader Andrea Briccarello adding: ‘Good, spicy character, smoky and savoury, classic style.’

£6.50 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Pérez Cruz, Limited Edition, Carmenère 2013, Maipo Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

‘Richly textured, with plenty of spices and lots of sweet oak, fleshy tannins,’ said team leader Olivier Marie, with Caroline Brangé of 28°-50° Mayfair adding: ‘Complex and well-balanced body, lovely dark fruits.’

£12.23 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Tamaya, Winemaker's Gran Reserva, Carmenère 2011, Limarí Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

‘Notes of wet soil, earthy and stony minerals on the nose, tight and intense on the palate, which is smoky, dry and savoury,’ said team leader Andrea Briccarello, with Andrea Domenicucci of Whatley Manor adding: ‘Good fruity style and good value.’

£8.75 Fine Wines Direct

Santa Rita, Gran Hacienda, Carmenère 2013, Central Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

‘Rich and jammy on the nose with cooked red fruits, simple and straightforward on the palate with plenty of typicity and soft sweet fruit flavour,’ said team leader Andrea Briccarello.

£5.93 Berkmann Wine Cellars

Emiliana, Signos de Origen, Carmenère 2011, Colchagua Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

Luigi Buonanno of Bianco43 found ‘ripe, sweet and green’ elements on the nose and palate, but ‘good balance and plenty of oak’. ‘Big, rich, bold and powerful,’ added team leader Olivier Marie.

£10.40 Boutinot

Santa Carolina, Reserva de la Familia, Carmenère 2012, Rapel Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

‘Ripe and nicely concentrated, with characterful tannins and structured, firm, fruity tones,’ said team leader Olivier Marie, with Luigi Buonanno of Bianco43 adding: ‘Good overall, palate is quite balanced, great length and power.’

£8.95 Ehrmanns Wine

Concha y Toro, Terrunyo, Peumo Vineyard, Block 27, Carmenère 2011, Cachapoal Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

‘Charming and captivating, fruity character on the nose with chocolatey notes, plenty of stone fruits on the palate, which has good, vibrant acidity and touches of smoked bacon and plum fruit cocktail,’ said team leader Andrea Briccarello.

£12.50 CyT UK

Caliterra, Tributo, Single Vineyard, Carmenère 2012, Colchagua Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

Errazuriz, 1870, Carmenère 2013, Aconcagua Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

Undurraga, TH, Terroir Hunter, Carmenère 2012, Cachapoal Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£15.00 González Byass

Casa Silva, Reserva Cuvée Colchagua, Carmenère 2013, Colchagua Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

Undurraga, Sibaris, Carmenère 2013, Colchagua Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

£10.00 González Byass

TerraMater, Limited Reserve, Carmenère 2012, Curicó Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

Valdivieso, Single Vineyard, Carmenère 2011, Lontué Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

£11.28 Bibendum

Chocalán, Reserva, Carmenère 2013, Maipo Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

£8.80 Liberty Wines

Bisquertt, La Joya, Gran Reserva, Carmenère 2013, Colchagua Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

£6.39 Molson Coors

 

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