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Welcome to my blog, which was once a mailing list of the same name and is still generated by mail. Please reply via the "comment" links.

Always interested in offers/projects/new ideas. Eclectic experience in fields like: numerical computing; Python web; Java enterprise; functional languages; GPGPU; SQL databases; etc. Based in Santiago, Chile; telecommute worldwide. CV; email.

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Chilean Wine Tours

From: "andrew cooke" <andrew@...>

Date: Mon, 5 Feb 2007 19:47:47 -0300 (CLST)

Just come back from a good tour of the Cousino Macul winery -
http://www.cousinomacul.cl/ - which was probably the best ever.

A couple of days ago we went to Concha y Toro -
http://www.cousinomacul.cl/ - which is a short bus ride from Puente Alto
(you could walk in maybe 30mins, I would guess).  The new metro line 4
makes both Concha Y Toro and Cousino Macul easy to get to (CM is 30mins
walk down Quilin from the stop of the same name; it's just over an hour
from our flat).

The C+T tour was a fairly brief, friendly tour, that started by looking at
some grapes, then has a tasting of "varietal" (Carmenere) before visiting
the cellars (including "el Casillero del Diablo") before a second tasting
of a "reserve".  While entertaining, there wasn't that much information -
what there was seemed aimed more at the american tourists (how long you
could keep wine in the fridge, some marginally silly advice about how to
hold wine glasses, etc).

In contrast, the CM tour had much more information about the wine making
process and included visiting the steel containers in which the wine is
fermented.  The tastings were similar (Gris instead of Carmenere - both
are "Chilean", and then either Cabernet or Merlot reserve (Jo and I got
one of each which made it easy to compare the two; initially the Merlot
seemed preferable, but the Cabernet was better by the end of the glass)). 
Reading this brief description there doesn't seem that much difference,
but really a winery tour is very much about the guide rather than what you
see.  And the CM guide was way more authoritative (without being arrogant)
than the C+T guy (who also managed to annoy Paulina with vaguely "macho"
comments).

In the past I've also been to Undurraga.  From what I remember that was
similar to Cousino Macul (had more wines to taste, but not quite as good a
guide).  In fairness I should also say that I've been to CM twice before
and the tour was not as good as today, so your mileage will vary.

Finally, one good point made by the guide - end of March/start of April is
the best time to visit because that's when the harvest comes in.

And a note to myself to buy more CM wine.  For some reason I've avoided
them (I've not had a single bottle of iced Gris this summer! (and there's
a more expensive Gris - 4000ish - available too)).

Andrew

Wine Prices

From: "andrew cooke" <andrew@...>

Date: Thu, 8 Feb 2007 15:38:37 -0300 (CLST)

One extra note - the prices at the Cousino Macul Winery seem to be pretty
good - at least for the reserves and above, Jumbo and Mundo de Vino are
about 10% higher, while Fabalella stuck an extra 50% on the Finis Terrae.

Andrew

Concha y Toro

From: "andrew cooke" <andrew@...>

Date: Tue, 26 Aug 2008 07:05:42 -0400 (CLT)

I just noticed I linked to Cousino Macul twice; the second link above
should instead be http://www.conchaytoro.com (click on "visit us).

Andrew

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