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The wines of Casa Lapostolle, Chile
Benjamin 2935, Of. 801 Las Condes, Santiago, Chile

See a more recent (September 2002) review of this producer's wines here

This Rapel-based producer specializes in premium wines, and employs Pomerol-based Michel Rolland as consultant winemaker. This may explain why there's a hint of European classiness to some of the wines, along with the pure, up-front fruit that we've come to expect from Chile. This is one of my favourite Chilean producers, and I was pretty impressed with most of the wines. My only real criticism is that the Cuvée Alexandre Chardonnay was clearly entering a declining phase; it's still impressive, but would have been a great deal better a year or two ago, I suspect. This seems to be a common feature of modern-style Chilean whites: they are often protected from oxygen so carefully during the winemaking process that you really have to drink them as young as possible, before they begin to oxidise.

Casa Lapostolle Sauvignon Blanc 2000
An impressive new world Sauvignon in a modern style. Huge nose of ripe grapefruit and gooseberry, with a bit of that rather technological 'boiled sweets' edge. Soft, sweetly fruited and richly textured on the palate. Very good+

Casa Lapostolle Chardonnay 1999
For me, this is one of the classiest Chilean Chardonnays around. Delicious ripe nose of tropical fruit and toasty oak. Richly textured with nice balance on the palate. Ripe and full, but not overdone. Very good/excellent

Casa Lapostolle Cuvée Alexandre Chardonnay 1997
I think this ambitious wine would have been better two years ago! Golden colour. Exotic, ripe nose with some oxidation evident. Complex, full, powerful and ripe on the palate, but beginning to show signs of decline. Very good+

Casa Lapostolle Merlot 1999
Very attractive leafy cherry fruit on the nose. Nice balance on the palate with abundant leafy blackcurrant fruit. A bit Loire-like. Honest! Very good

Casa Lapostolle Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Nose is dominated by leafy blackcurrant fruit. Pure fruit and firm tannins on the palate. Good/very good

Casa Lapostolle Cuvée Alexandre Cabernet Sauvignon 1997
Knockout nose of sweet black fruit. The concentrated palate combines pure fruit and spicy tannins. Chunky and sweet. Very god+

Casa Lapostolle Cuvée Alexandre Merlot 1998
An attractive, full-on wine. Beautiful sweet spicy nose leads to a dense, ripe palate of sweet fruit and firm tannin. Very good/excellent

Wines tasted: November 2000 at Decanter Fine Wine Encounter

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