Viña Montes (winery), Apalta (near Santa Cruz), Colchagua Valley, Chile

Located on the lower slopes of the vineyards and blending in with the gentle slope of the vineyards and the surrounding beautiful natural area, the Viña Montes winery and cellar in Apalta (near Santa Cruz), Colchagua Valley, Chile, opened in 2004

Located on the lower slopes of the vineyards and blending in with the gentle slope of the vineyards and the surrounding beautiful natural area, the Viña Montes winery and cellar in Apalta (near Santa Cruz), Colchagua Valley, Chile, opened in 2004

Founded in 1987 by four friends – originally by Aurelio Montes and Douglas Murray, with Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand joining the team in 1988 — Viña Montes produces some of Chile’s finest wines. Among the award-winning bottlings is the Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon, considered by many to be Chile’s first truly premium wine. Acquired in 2007, the lofty Apalta vineyards are comprised of rocky, granite soil blessed with abundant sun and cool nights. Interestingly, all of the Montes grapes are harvested at night, a practice believed to maintain a lower brix (sugar) level overal.

The winery design incorporates the principles of feng shui so that all the prime elements – water, metal and wood – are part of the design in accordance with the principles of the Chinese system, ensuring harmony in a positive atmosphere

The winery design incorporates the principles of feng shui so that all the prime elements – water, metal and wood – are part of the design in accordance with the principles of the Chinese system, ensuring harmony in a positive atmosphere

“From the first drawing board ideas, we were insistent that its design incorporated the principles of feng shui. With the help of Chilean expert Silvia Galleguillos, all the prime elements – water, metal and wood – were incorporated into the design in accordance with the principles of the Chinese system, ensuring harmony in a positive atmosphere. At the entrance of the winery, a wooden access bridge crosses a small lagoon, whose water flows towards the building in accordance with the fundamental principle of feng shui, that prosperity will only come if the water, representing energy, flows towards the center of the building, not away from it. At the center of the winery a fountain lies directly under a lily-shaped skylight, representing the sun and moon: the point from which energy is distributed, connecting the building to the outside universe.” – www.monteswines.com

Dry farming the vineyards produces better grapes (and wines) while saving considerable quantities of water

Dry farming the vineyards produces better grapes (and wines) while saving considerable quantities of water

 

Winemaker Aurelio Montes has always maintained that “80% of good wine comes from the vineyards and only 20% from the cellar”, so vineyard care is paramount

Winemaker Aurelio Montes has always maintained that “80% of good wine comes from the vineyards and only 20% from the cellar”, so vineyard care is paramount

Our visit started in the morning at the Apalta Vineyards and the winery and then we drove to the Marchigue Estate for a vineyard Chilean barbecue luncheon, Colchagua Valley, Chile

Our visit started in the morning at the Apalta Vineyards and the winery and then we drove to the Marchigüe Estate for a vineyard Chilean barbecue luncheon, Colchagua Valley, Chile

A view of the Apalta Vineyards from the roof of the Viña Montes winery, looking across a portable grape sorting table, Colchagua Valley, Chile

A view of the Apalta Vineyards from the roof of the Viña Montes winery, looking across a portable grape sorting table, Colchagua Valley, Chile

 

 

The wooden and stainless steel fermenting tanks at the Viña Montes winery receive grape juice by gravity, through the black-striped red hose (center)

The wooden and stainless steel fermenting tanks at the Viña Montes winery receive grape juice by gravity, through the black-striped red hose (center)

The Viña Montes winery tasting room overlooks the Apalta Vineyards, Colchagua Valley, Chile

The Viña Montes winery tasting room overlooks the Apalta Vineyards, Colchagua Valley, Chile.jpg

Our small group’s private tasting included three Viña Montes iconic wines -- Montes Alpha M, Montes Folly and Purple Angel by Montes

Our small group’s private tasting included three Viña Montes iconic wines — Montes Alpha M, Montes Folly and Purple Angel by Montes

Our small group’s private tasting included three Viña Montes iconic wines — Montes Alpha M (a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot), Montes Folly (the winery’s premier, 100% Syrah wine) and Purple Angel by Montes (regarded as one of Chile’s top wines, comprised of 92% Carmenere (which, until 20 years ago, was thought to be Merlot!) and 8% Petit Verdot).

Like the rest of the Viña Montes winery, the underground barrel aging room was beautifully designed and takes into consideration the principles of feng shui

Like the rest of the Viña Montes winery, the underground barrel aging room was beautifully designed and takes into consideration the principles of feng shui

We each got a taste of young wine, aging in the barrels at the Viña Montes winery_

We each got a taste of young wine, aging in the barrels at the Viña Montes winery

 

One thought on “Viña Montes (winery), Apalta (near Santa Cruz), Colchagua Valley, Chile

  1. Heartening to know water is being conserved in other countries. This facility has quite a production! Feng Shui in Chile? Who would have thought?

    Like

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