Exploring the Icons and Outer Limits with Montes

At The Wine Rack

with Christopher Reckord

Thursday, November 01, 2018

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Encouraging wine enthusiasts to expand their wine choices is a hobby of mine. Many new wine drinkers understandably prefer sweeter, more fruit-forward wines. However, after they “graduate” in a couple of years I do my best to introduce them to the vast world of choices from across the globe. Surprisingly, many people have yet to discover the premium and ultra-premium South American wines of which Vi ñ a Montes produces some of the finest.

Ultra-Premium Icon Wines

Uncorked Kingston and Uncorked MoBay with support from Viña Montes regional representative Christopher Jones and wine importer/distributor Select Brands provided a fantastic opportunity to experience some of Viña Montes' finest wines. The award-winning wine-centric restaurant hosted a limited-seating five-course dinner starting with a sparkling wine from Montes and featuring two new Montes wines and two icon wines. The icon wines included one of the best and most awarded wines from Chile, the Montes Alpha M and the first ultra-premium Syrah wine from Chile: the Montes Folly, my favourite of the evening.

 

Outer Limits

New to me were two wines from Outer Limits which is a new line of Viña Montes wines from various regions in Chile. While this line consists of six wines: Sauvignon Blanc, Cinsault, Moscatel Rosada, Pinot Noir, CGM Red Wine and Syrah, the event featured the Sauvignon Blanc and the CGM Red Wine.

As the name suggests, the vineyards for this project are quite a distance from where almost all wine producers grow grapes, for example, the Montes Outer Limits. Sauvignon Blanc wine is produced by grapes from vineyards located 7 km from the coast of the beach resort town Zapallar. They are the only vineyards with the Zapallar Denomination of Origin, which is the most coastal zone of the Aconcagua Valley, the outer limits indeed.

The first wine for the evening, the Montes Sparkling Angel (70% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay), was made using the “traditional method”, also known as the méthode Champenoise. Jones explained to guests that while brut Champagnes are required to spend 24 months on their lees; the Montes Sparkling Angel spend 36 months thus enhancing its elegance and complexity.

Here are the winemakers' tasting notes for this and all the wines in the order they were served:

 

Sparkling Angel Winemaker: White flowers, fresh fruits, breadcrumbs, and light toast, with notes of dried fruit, hazelnut, and walnut aromas in nose. In palate is well-balanced with good acidity and fine, crisp foam. Creamy and silky on the mid-palate with a fresh, fruity, and persistent finish.

 

Montes Outer Limits Sauvignon Blanc 2017: Light yellow in colour, this version of the Outer Limits Sauvignon Blanc is as vibrant and intense as its predecessors. In addition to its typical notes of passion fruit, it offers aromas of lime and grapefruit with a bit of asparagus on the backdrop. The palate is fresh, crisp, and dry with very well-achieved acidity. The body is light, but lingers long, highlighting even further its cold-climate character.

 

Montes Outer Limits Red Wine 2016 (50% Carignan, 30% Grenache, 20% Mourvèdre): This wine presents a deep and bright ruby-red colour and aromas suggesting ripe black and red fruits such as plums, blackberries, and dried figs with a touch of cinnamon. The palate presents tremendous body and good structure with balanced freshness and elegant persistence.

 

Montes Folly Syrah 2015: An impressive, intense and deep ruby-red colour. The nose is exuberant and elegant, with a predominance of ripe, black fruit and cherry liqueur. Spice notes meld with aromas of chocolate, leather, and soft toast to deliver typicity. The impressively expressive palate has generous volume. Perfectly rounded tannins and a pleasingly sweet sensation are very much in balance with the natural acidity. Elegant and seductive, with a long and memorable finish.

 

Montes Alpha M 2013: Very deep, intense, ruby-red in colour. The nose is perfumed and complex with outstanding aromas of ripe red and black fruits over subtle notes of crème de cassis, tobacco, and leather. Spice aromas of red and black pepper mingle with cinnamon and dark chocolate notes. The palate is smooth but structured, with silky tannins that lend breadth and exceptional voluptuousness. Juicy and generous with delicious sensations very much in accordance with the nose with aromas of dried figs that explode on the mid-palate and ending on a long, elegant, and very pleasing finish.

When you find an age-worthy wine that you enjoy, I always suggest that you buy six or 12 bottles. Next week we share a side-by-side tasting of a 2006 and 2015 Montes Folly Syrah as a result of an investment made years ago.

 

Christopher Reckord — Wine Enthusiast and CEO of Managed IT services provider tTech Limited. Send your questions and comments to creckord@gmail.com. You can also follow me on Facebook, Instagram @chrisreckord and on Twitter: @Reckord

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