2015 Undurraga “Terroir Hunter” Cabernet Sauvignon, Maule Valley, Chile (Alcohol 14.4%, Residual Sugar 3 g/L) LCBO Vintages $24.95 (750ml bottle)

It’s not too often that I find myself recommending Chilean Cabernets in this column, but this “Terroir Hunter” from Underraga at under $25 was simply too good to pass up, especially if you give it a little aeration (say, maybe a rough decant and around an hour in said decanter) or alternatively use one of these. In saying that, I’m not in any way suggesting that the tannins haven’t already been judiciously managed, as they certainly have; I’m simply suggesting that the wine will be even more approachable and expressive with the application of some rapid oxygenation.

Considering the $24.95 price tag, we are looking at what is, in relation to its LCBO shelf-buddies, an extremely polished and crafted bottle of wine. It’s also probably worth pointing out that this sells for quite a bit more in some other provinces (and has been offered for the Canadian equivalent of around $36 in the UK!) and so this is a bit of a steal here in Ontario. 

With the fruit sourced from a single vineyard site in the Pirque area of the Alto Maipo area, this wine has an expressive and concentrated bouquet of classic blackcurrants rounded out by some most attractive mocha, licorice, vanilla, dusty leather books, and judiciously-placed oak spice. The palate also shows the same ripe concentration, giving the wine a medium/full body in the mouth, with very well-rounded tannins leading to a satisfying and extended graphite-tinged finish.

Truly terrific wine for the money.

4 apples out of 5

(Four apples out of a possible five)

Jamie Drummond

Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food Revolution… And that alcohol is getting up there.