Viña Apaltagua Reserva Pinot Noir 2014

Translucent ruby color; cherry, raspberry, cranberry on the nose; raspberry, cherry, cranberry, plum, blueberry on the palate.

Rich, rustic, soft oak, dusty tannin, sour cherry on the finish. Competes well in the value-price pinot noir realm (Mark West, Meiomi)—which in my estimation means it is serviceable red wine, but does not approach the etherial delights of much more expensive offerings from Burgundy and Oregon. Works well as second-third bottle in a boisterous evening of fellowship and fun, but does not represent the joy that pinot noir can deliver.

The Viña Apaltagua story begins when American businessman Edward Tutunjian vacationed in Chile in 1995 and was smitten by the country and its wines. He soon acquired his first vineyard and then continued to expand his holdings, including the Apaltagua Winery in the Colchagua region. His latest acquisitions include the estates of Palmilla in Colchagua and Manantiales in the San Antonio Valley—from which came the grapes for this effort. Today, Viña Apaltagua produces 235,000 cases of wine and exports to more than 40 markets worldwide. The company is completing company-wide certification for sustainability, earning Vinos de Chile sustainability certification in all areas—vineyards, winery, and corporate responsibility.

This is commodity pinot noir that will please the pocketbook and will not offend even if it does not soar to delight heights on the palate. $13

Viña Apaltagua website

Second photo: Hacienda San Juan de Pirque, headquarters for Viña Apaltagua near Santiago, Chile.

Viña Apaltagua Reserva Pinot Noir 2014
Hacienda San Juan de Pirque