Casa Real: Chile’s first wine legend

Viña Santa Rita’s 1989 Casa Real recognized by Decanter as one of the best wines in the world.

October was a historical month for Chilean wine — for the first time ever a Chilean label was chosen by Decanter Magazine as a “Wine Legend”.

The renowned authority on the world of wine, Decanter chose to add Viña Santa Rita’s Casa Real 1989 to its list of top world class labels. The Cabernet Sauvignon was chosen for its distinguished flavor, smoothness, and overall quality.

“Casa Real has been one of the oldest and most elegant wines since its first harvest right up until today. This icon has had an evolution of character and quality consistent with the time,” the international publication said. “ It is one of the best Chilean Cabernet Sauvignons.”

Named for sir Vicente García Huidobro, marquis of Casa Real whose family owned the Santa Rita property from the eighteenth century until 1980, the award-winning red is made from hand-picked grapes whose vines are over 20 years old. The distinct character of the aged wine comes from its terroir — unique to the Alto Jahuel in the Maipo region outside of Santiago.

Although this is a big moment for Santa Rita and for Chilean wine, it is not the first international accolade the Casa real line has received. Canadian wine magazine Wine Access gave the Cabernet Sauvignon 95 points out of 100, its 2005 vintage was named the “Year’s Best Chilean Red Wine” in Wine and Spirits Magazine, and the label had previously been named “Best New World Red” by Decanter.

Chile’s wine industry continues to become more and more popular and respected around the world, something its countrymen are proud of.

“For Chile, wine is a creating the image that is allowing us to reach distant destinations, because it is a product that best sums up our country, for its quality, tradition, and technological innovation,” said a press release from the Fundación Imagen de Chile. “Through wine thousands of people have come to know Chile; it is what opens doors and opportunities to related experiences like gastronomy and tourism.”