06 September 2010

2008 Terranoble Gran Reserva Carménère

As a followup to Friday's review, here's another Chilean red wine I had the chance to try recently. The 2008 Terranoble Gran Reserva Carménère comes from the Maule Valley. $14, 14% abv. 96% Carménère, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon.

I like Carménère, but my favorite wines from the grape have been more blended. I was expecting some big green pepper aromas, but this wine surprised me with its complexity. Rich dark chocolate and cassis notes. Mild elements of eucalyptus and brambles. Medium tannins, and unlike many red wines in its price range, this is ready to drink straight when poured and doesn't require breathing to knock off the rough edges. (Though as with any red wine, it does get softer with time.)

The wine was served with steak, and then a day later with roasted pork. It's full bodied enough to stand up to strongly flavored sauces and ingredients on the plate, but it's also mellow enough to be enjoyed as a slow sipper after dinner.

Note: I received this wine as a sample.


Kimberly said...

Oh, you make it sound so good! I've tried a few Carmeneres in the last 6 months or so, but I still can't find one I really like. They all seem to have some kind of weird "edge" or flavor that puts me off. Which I really can't identify.
But maybe I'm drinking the wrong ones, or, it's a flavor profile that doesn't really appeal to my palate. But I'm a trooper, so I'm going to keep trying Carmenere until I find one I can like! :)

Benito said...


I think this is the best inexpensive Carmenere that I've had. There are some ones that are over $50, blended about half and half with Cab Sav or Merlot, and aged for a few years that are amazing, but a lot of the young, 100% Carmeneres are really heavy on the green bell pepper/tobacco/tomato leaf flavor. Is that what you get from it? Personally, I really like that sharp, bitter, herbal element, and liking cigars doesn't hurt either, but it's really hard to recommend to people.


Kimberly said...

I think that might be it, Benito -- that bell pepper/tomato leaf flavor. And if I'm remembering correctly, I've also had one that had a kind of tinny/metallic flavor. But I've never tried any of the higher-end versions, the ones I've had have for sure been in the value category. I'll step up to some pricier versions when I get a chance, and also try to find one that has another grape blended in, and see if that makes a difference. Thanks for the tip!