The Maipo Valley is one of the best places to venture into historic Chilean wine. Some of the oldest vines in the country were planted in the region and Maipo wine is one of Chile’s best-known wine exports.
The region is famed for its premium Maipo Cabernet Sauvignon, produced by some of Chile’s most historic and prestigious wine estates
Explore the styles of Maipo Valley wine
Maipo wine’s most famous style is full-bodied fruit-driven Cabernet Sauvignon. Some of the best Maipo Valley Cabernet Sauvignon comes from the Puento Alto sub-region just on the southern edges of the capital Santiago. One of the first areas in Chile to be recognised as having distinct terroir, this Maipo Cabernet Sauvignon is held in high esteem and commands high prices. A wine from this sub-region was voted top red wine in the Berlin Tasting of 2004, when Chilean wines went head to head with some of the Bordeaux greats, and won. Puento Alto also produces excellent Syrah, Carménère and Chardonnay.
Another sub-region of the Maipo Valley wine region producing commendable Maipo Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is Pirque, just south of Santiago and the Puento Alto sub-region. Cabernet Sauvignon from here is powerful and concentrated. The area is well-worth a visit to try its wines en situ, boasting a handful of excellent producers whose best vineyards enjoy a view over the valley from the Andes foothills in a series of horseshoe-shaped valleys. Its hilly location protects the vineyards from winds later in the season, allowing the grapes to ripen fully and produce big, bold Maipo red wine with firm tannins, dense concentration and excellent structure. Carménère, Chardonnay and Maipo Sauvignon Blanc are also cultivated in this prestigious sub-region.
Venture into Santiago’s vineyards and discover Maipo wine
Maipo vineyards are just a stone’s throw from Chilean capital, Santiago. Indeed, some of its most historic vineyards and wine estates mingle with the capital’s southern suburbs. Boasting historic buildings and often cutting-edge winemaking technology, visiting a Maipo winery is the perfect excursion to escape the hustle and bustle of the capital. Many Maipo wineries were established in the nineteenth century when winemaking in Chile really began to take off and possess beautiful colonial-style buildings and well-kept estates in which to enjoy your trip into Maipo Valley wine. With the towering snow-capped Andes as the backdrop, the bright-blue skies above, and surrounded by verdant gardens and large swathes of lush vineyards, Maipo wine-tasting is an experience for all your senses. If you visit the region in March, you may also get to see the Cabernet grapes coming in and being processed after harvest.
Discover Maipo wine in Santiago’s wine bars and restaurants
Santiago boasts a vibrant restaurant and nightlife scene with plenty of restaurants and wine bars serving up traditional Chilean fare, fresh seafood, hearty meat and innovative cuisine. Most of Santiago’s restaurants are concentrated in its historic centre, Barrio Lastarria, Bellavista, Barrio Brasil, Providencia and Las Condes. Dining out affords you the chance to pair premium Maipo wine with creative Chilean cuisine.
Chile’s diverse geography and climate means the country has an excellent range of fresh fruit and vegetable produce on offer as well as a huge array of seafood thanks to its long coastline, also home to unique species of fish and shellfish. Chile’s fresh ingredients are then combined to form delicious innovative dishes, influenced by Spanish cuisine as well as Chilean Mapuche culture, not to mention later influences from Germany, France and Italy. Whether you dine Chilean or international style, you’re sure to find the best dish to pair with your Maipo Cabernet Sauvignon or Maipo Sauvignon Blanc.
Let our local experts at Wine Paths help you to experience the best of Maipo wine both in Santiago and its vineyards.
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