The Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 is 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Syrah, and 5% Carménère sourced from Estate vineyards of Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) Colchagua Valley vineyard and winery in central Chile. This Estate was founded in 1988 and was the first French wine project in modern Chile.
Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) is one of the legendary names of Bordeaux and is an expert at producing wine from Bordeaux grapes, such as Cabernet Sauvignon. The vineyards of Bordeaux have a long history of struggle and near devastation from disease, pests, mold, and even war. There were periods where almost entire vintages were nearly wiped out.
Virtually none of the problems that have plagued Bordeaux winemakers exist in Chile. The vineyards regions of Chile are located in the high foothills of coastal mountains. They are above the altitude where pests and diseases can live. These vineyards are in out-of-the-way areas far from air and water pollution.
The Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 is a bottle that you should find for around $20, and the 2018 vintage received 92 points from the leading wine critic. The term Gran Reserva is not an official designation. In Spain, Reserve and Gran Reserve are legal terms that refer to aging and winemaking regulations. In Chile, it more of a way to differentiate different tiers of wine.
While Chile has a great climate for grapes, there is one problem: a lack of rainfall. Too much rainfall is bad for the vines, especially at the wrong time of the season, such as at harvest. No rain can be a major issue; luckily, the estate managers can divert water run-off from the mountains for irrigation purposes.
The grapes for the Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 were taken from some of the higher altitude plots and the main estate vineyards. Syrah is not a typical blending grape for Cabernet Sauvignon; it is not approved for Bordeaux. The winemakers chose it because the estate grows excellent quality Syrah.
The Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 was fermented in stainless steel vats. After fermentation, 50% of the wine was transferred to French oak barrels; the winemaker kept the other 50% in stainless steel. The Cabernet Sauvignon was aged 12 months. The mix of 50% oak barrel and stainless steel gives the wine a blend of bright, fresh fruit flavors along with oak influence. The alcohol content is a more California-like 14.5%.
Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 Tasting Notes
The color is a clear garnet red with black highlights. The nose shows blackberry, green pepper, mint, black pepper, tea, dark chocolate, and ripe plum. The Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 has a firm mouthfeel with a sleek texture.
It tastes of rounded plums and strawberry, followed by chocolate, light spice, and soft herbs. The mid-palate adds a slightly rough edge from orange zest, cooling blueberry, a salty sensation, tobacco, sour cherry, and a late taste of milk chocolate.
The tannins provide structure but do not interfere with the flavor profile. The acidity gives this wine the length for the flavors to unfold.
- The Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 is a delicious Cab.
- This wine is a French-owned Chilean winery with a Cabernet Sauvignon with a very California alcohol content of 14.5%.
- If you like the French style of sleek, lean Cabernet, but enjoy the rich fruit and flavor of California, the Los Vascos Cromas Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 gives you both.