Clos Apalta Le Petit Clos 2016
|Region||Chile, Colchagua, Apalta Valley|
Minerally and well-structured, with bright acidity backing the concentrated cherry and raspberry flavors. Dried green herbal notes and peppery hints show on the fresh finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Carmenère. Drink now through 2024. 3,700 cases made, 1,000 cases imported.
The "second wine" here, the 2016 Le Petit Clos is a very different blend from the 2015; it is now mostly Cabernet Sauvignon with just 4% Merlot and 1% Carménère, while last year it was almost half Carménère. The vineyards are now certified in organic and biodynamic agriculture. The bunches were hand-destemmed, and the grapes fermented in oak vats with indigenous yeasts and a six-week maceration. Malolactic was in barrique, and the élevage happened as follows: the wine spent seven months in new French barriques, and then 71% of the volume was transferred to French oak barriques (22% new and 49% second year), while the rest of the wine was put in oak vats. The élevage was 23 months in total. With the change in varieties, this feels very different from the Clos Apalta-more Cabernet here and more Carménère there. The nose is elegant and nuanced, with herbs, spices and a core of ripe red and black fruit, quite varietal and with integrated oak. The palate is medium to full-bodied, with round tannins and vibrant acidity, making it long and supple. I think it's a step up over the 2015. 43,826 bottles were produced. It was bottled in September 2018. The wine is 14.7% alcohol and has a pH of 3.49. Drink Date: 2019-2024.
The second wine from Clos Apalta continues the Bordeaux-influenced style of the house. With a 95% base of Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot and a drop of Carménère (1%), all from Apalta in Colchagua, this wine is a deep maroon-red with a nose of cassis and blackberries and gentle hints of wood and herbs. Tannic on the palate with a midlevel structure and potent flavors, it has a warm feel in the mouth.