From a historic vineyard of extremely old (200+ years old) vines of Pais near Santa Juana, in the Bío Bío Valley. This is likely one of the oldest vineyard sites in Chile, planted on sedimentary red clays and old volcanic soils.
Vinification/ Aging: Hand harvested. Destemmed, gentle crushing, wild ferment. 1 to 3 week fermentation. 5 months in 60% stainless steel and 40% old barrels
Alcohol Grade: 12.7%
Best to have it: 14-16ºC
Size: 750 ml
The Winery: Roberto Henriquez
A native of Concepción, Roberto – largely inspired by his Uncle – has always dreamed of making wine.
He studied as an Agronomist and Enologist, then worked for wineries in Chile, South Africa, and Canada. Returning to Chile, Roberto spent some time with local wine producers, and this experience – along with working with producers such as Mosse in France (Loire), was very important to him.
The Bio-Bio region (close to where Roberto was born) is, in his view, the most unspoiled place to make wine in Chile. The old farmers work traditionally, having never used chemicals. However, the Chilean culture doesn’t pay much importance to historic winemaking, and he felt he had to do something to try and keep the tradition alive.
While also working as a wine growing consultant, in 2015 Roberto started his project, working with traditional methods and old vines. He is now building his winery. Roberto farms 7 ha which are close together in the mountains – Cordillera de Nahuelbuta.
In Bio-Bio, there is considerable soil diversity between plots. Vine-training height also varies – Riviera del Notro at 1m high, and the Santa Cruz de Coya vines lay very close to the ground. It’s an incredible climate region with a cool spring, summers below 30 degrees, many cloudy days, and a quick transition from Autumn to Winter. Southerly latitude plays a massive part, as does the mountain topography (lots of small hills and vines situated on inclines); maximum altitude is under 400m. Roberto does the traditional winemaking style of Chile – manual destemming, gentle crushing of grapes and punch downs, only using Chilean wood (just when he bottles pipeño), and short macerations.