Log In / Join Now

Viña Santa Rita Announces New Line of Chilean Wines

James Molesworth
Posted: July 2, 2001

Chile's Viña Santa Rita has introduced a new line of wines called Floresta. Debuting with two red bottlings, the Floresta line will retail for about $25 a bottle, placing it between Santa Rita's Medalla Real varietal line and its top-end Casa Real Cabernet Sauvignon.

The first wine, which is being released this month, is a blend of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Carmenère from the excellent 1997 vintage. About 1,000 cases -- one-fourth of the total production -- are being brought into the United States.

The second wine is a Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon blend from the El Niño¿troubled 1998 vintage. Despite the year's poor pedigree, Santa Rita had some old-vine lots of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon that the winemakers felt merited being released under the new label, though this blend will not be available in the United States.

These first two releases are made from fruit grown at Santa Rita's Casa Real estate in the Maipo Valley, from which Santa Rita's Casa Real Cabernet Sauvignon is made.

The Floresta line is meant to provide Santa Rita winemakers Andrés Illabaca and Cecilia Torres with a free-form venue, and future releases will be composed of different varietal blends with fruit from the Maipo estate. Upcoming releases will include a Syrah-Merlot-Carmenère 1999, a Petit Sirah-Merlot 1999 and a Cabernet Sauvignon¿Cabernet Franc¿Carmenère 1999. In addition, a single vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from Apalta will also be released under the Floresta label, the only wine not to source fruit from the Maipo estate.

# # #

Check our recent ratings of Santa Rita wines.

Read recent news about new Chilean wines:

  • June 1, 2001
    Chile's Odfjell Vineyards Makes Its Debut With Two Reds

  • May 9, 2001
    Baron Philippe de Rothschild Releases Another Chilean Wine

  • Feb. 1, 2001
    Two New Wine Projects Coming From South America

  • Oct. 10, 2000
    Chile's Viña Santa Rita Expands, Plans New High-End Cabernet

  • Oct. 7, 2000
    Chile's Concha y Toro Releases Two New Brands

  • Aug. 17, 2000
    Two Chilean Wineries Are on the Move

    Read James Molesworth's recent tasting reports on South American wines:

  • March 31, 2001
    Coming of Age in South America

  • March 31, 2000
    South America's Peaks and Valleys
  • Would you like to comment? Want to join or start a discussion?

    Become a WineSpectator.com member and you can!
    To protect the quality of our conversations, only members may submit comments. Member benefits include access to more than 315,000 reviews in our Wine Ratings Search; a first look at ratings in our Insider, Advance and Tasting Highlights; Value Wines; the Personal Wine List/My Cellar tool, hundreds of wine-friendly recipes and more.

    WineRatings+ app: Download now for 340,000+ ratings.