So vino a Chile y no toms vino a que vino ~ If you came to Chile and you didn’t have wine, why did you come to Chile
Part of our #onlyinsouthamerica tour of Chile was to show us the different landscapes this country has to offer. Considering Chile has nearly 4,000 miles of coast, covers a range of heights from sea level to 22,615 feet, and, from tip to tip, goes from tropics to near the Antarctic Circle, it is a place that holds all types of geological systems. The Casablanca Valley just outside Santiago felt just like visiting Napa Valley on our honeymoon…the beautiful tall Italian cypress trees lining hill tops and long driveways, the scenic vistas with avocado, olive, and grape plantations out the window of our vehicle as we made our way to tour two Chilean wineries: Kingston & Casa Marin where we had lunch at the top of the vineyard hill with the Pacific Ocean just off the horizon line.
From gold-hunting to cattle farming, the Kingston family has been in the Casablanca Valley for over 100 years. Surprisingly, their now award-winning winery is their newest venture. Started in the 1990s with a daring new business plan – growing cool-climate red grapes in a region known for white wines – their vineyard became known for creating some of the “best pinots in Chile”. Cows still graze in the fields, and gold is still buried underground…but dreams came true through grapevines.
After we took our tour of this intimate, quaint, quiet, and breathtakingly beautiful winery we went to their porch overlooking the vineyard and sampled the award winning wines with some local cheeses and their homemade olive oil which was SO GOOD I had to bring some back with me!
María Luz Marín had a dream – to create a unique winery with delectable and exclusive wines. Despite people telling her she’d never be able to grow grapes, she established her vineyard in a small town in the San Antonio Valley. Now, many awards later, her critics have been silenced, and Chilean wines have been brought to the world’s attention.
We found ourselves at the end of the tour on top of hill covered in rows of vines overlooking the entire property with the faintest view of the pacific ocean on the horizon, covered by the thick fog rolling in. It was so peaceful, the only sound was that of my shoes on the earth, marking my path down the lanes caressing the leaves that will bear the fruit of a cabinet savion. The whole scene was out of the movie A Walk in the Clouds….
PS – there is a two bedroom B&B house you can rent here for a true wine getaway!