Deep purple ruby; black cherry, blackberry, blackcurrant on the nose; cherry, licorice, blackberry, spiced plum, pepper on the palate.
Dry; smooth, silky tannins and balancing acidity; easy-drinking on pop-and-pour. Medium-plus body. Grapes are hand-sorted twice before going into the winery. The wine spent eight months in French oak, 25% new, so there is some oak background but nothing to muffle the fruit. Good structure with savory elements. This is not complex or profound cab—but it is an immanently quaffable, polished, plush pleasure. 14% ABV
Escudo Rojo is Spanish for “red shield”—and reflects the Rothschild name. Rothschild is the German and Jewish name for a house marked with a red sign or a red shield. Middle High German ‘rot’ (red) plus ‘schilt’ (sign or shield). The logo on the bottle is a red shield.
The wine comes from the Valle Central, about 30 miles 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, everyday wine. The Rothschild’s Maipo vineyard is 156 acres, but the winery also buys fruit on long-term contracts with partner winegrowers.
Baron Philippe de Rothschild Escudo Rojo Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon, Chile 2018 is polished, easily approachable with red and black fruits. Round and slurp-able without decanting. Fresh. Simple, tasty, impressively long finish with the black fruits. Excellent QPR (quality-price ratio). Pair with braised shoulder of lamb; slow-cooked lamb chops; glazed duck breast; wild game—venison, boar; beef—grilled, braised, roast, pan-broiled, pan-fried; also will work with pizza, burgers, comfort food like meatloaf. Cheese—aged cheddar, gouda, cheeses with complex flavors. $15-18