Chile is the world's fifth largest exporter and seventh wine producer. Grapevine is grown here from the north (Atacama Desert) to the south covering an area of 900 km. Cabernet Sauvignon (which overshadowed the oldest cultivated variety País) has become the king of Chilean red wines, followed by Merlot, Carménère, Syrah and Pinot Noir. White wines are dominated by Sauvignon Blanc (Casablanca, Leyda, San Antonio), Chardonnay (Aconcagua Valley, Limarí etc.), Riesling (Lo Abarca) amongst other grapes. If the name of the variety is indicated on the label, the wine must contain at least 85% of that grape variety.
<p>The Casablanca Valley (in Spanish Valle de Casablanca) is situated on the west side of Chile, very close to the Pacific Ocean. The ocean cools down the valley with wet breezes which help to regulate temperatures. From the east side it’s protected by coastal mountains. This, relatively young, wine region (the winemaking started in 1980’ ) is definitely the most modern one in the country. The Casablanca Valley is also a Chile’s first cool-climate wine-growing region (similar to California's Sonoma Valley). It has become famous for its, especially, white wine (over 65 %) and red wine, both made from cool-weather grape varietals like Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Syrah amongst few others.</p>
<p>Cachapoal is the northern wine sub-region of the Rapel Valley and lies around the town Rancagua. The area is very fertile, with clay soils. The local wines are renowned for their mineral and very elegant character. It’s a home for such varieties as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and, especially, Carménère which is considered to be one of the best in the world!</p>