Deep purple color; cherry, red and black fruits, mocha, vanilla on fruit-forward nose; black cherry, blackberry, red fruits on the palate.
Dry; very laid back tannins; balancing acidity. Medium body. This is quintessential easy drinking Chilean. Blend of 40% cabernet sauvignon, 38% carménère, 20% syrah, 2% cabernet franc. The wine is one of the Baron Philippe de Rothschild brands. “Escudo Rojo” is the Spanish translation of the German “Rote Schild”—the family emblem of the iconic French wine company. Chile, Germany, France. Yep, welcome to the labyrinthine world of wine.
Half the vintage matured a year in oak barrels, 25% new and 75% one-to-two years old. The oak is subtle and contributes spice and roasted coffee bean notes. Nice finish. The wines age separately for about eight months, then they are blended and returned to barrel for about four months.
The wine comes from the Valle Central, south of Santiago. Baron Philippe de Rothschild selected Valle Central for the wide patchwork of soils and terroir. The north is dry with stony subsoil, while the south is damper with water-holding clay soil. Baron Philippe de Rothschild winemakers assert this delivers New World power and Old World refinement. True, but this also is an easy drinking, every day wine.
Baron Philippe de Rothschild Escudo Rojo Gran Reserva, Chile 2018 is tasty, easy drinking blend of four grapes, led by 40% cab and 38% carménère, then 20% syrah, 2% cab franc. That sounds like blend with punch, but Escudo Rojo pulls it together with less power and more finesse. Pair with braised shoulder of lamb; slow cooked lamb chops; glazed duck breast; also will work with pizza, burgers, comfort food like meatloaf. $19-23