The second round of tastings focused on the Cabernet Sauvignons of Chile produced plenty of good values. All of the wines offered at least decent Cabernet flavor, and the top wines of the tasting exhibited real character for little money. The most expensive bottles were only $16, and the winner was an extremely reasonable $15.
The first place bottle from the large Concha Y Toro winery was nearly unanimous in votes, and the second and third place wines were separated by only 2 points. All bottles received at least a couple points.
First Place: Concha Y Toro Cabernet Sauvignon Marques de Casa Concha 2008 (Puente Alto). Tasters found complex, alive aromas of grass, cola, rubber tire, plums, roses, cassis, and cedar. Josephine noted "sumi ink". A little tannin, along with a little vanilla, to go with the espresso and wood smoke notes in the mouth. Andy exclaimed, "That's a cab right there", and Josephine said, "Sigh....that's nice". Katie found it "savory at the end", and Andy felt that it "leaves your mouth wet". The favorite of the night for everyone except Josephine. Received 34 total points. Ali's bottle. About $15.
Second Place: Casa Lapostolle Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 (Rapel Valley). Looks unfiltered. A little closed aromatically, but opens up with aeration to blue ink, earl grey tea, pencil lead, seaweed, and earth. Katie felt it was like a "guy with a top hat and chain", and Ali noted "blackberry, but not ripe blackberry". On the palate, tasters found dark flavors of licorice, burnt toast, espresso, and cola. The most tannic, with a brooding style. The most improved of the night. Received 20 points. Andy's bottle. About $13.
Third Place: Santa Rita Cabernet Sauvignon Medalla Real 2006 (Maipo Valley). Offered complexity on the nose, with mushrooms, tomatoes, strawberries, raspberries, tomato plant, pink peppercorn, toast, charcoal, and flowers. Had brighter profile, almost summery. Josephine noted "stargazer lily". Dark coffee flavors, with plums, vanilla, and toasty oak. Katie noted a "feminine smell, masculine taste", and David said, "you can tell it's been aged in heavily toasted barrels". Andy felt "it's got a little stubble". Josephine's favorite of the night. Received 18 points. David's bottle. About $16.
Cousino-Macul Cabernet Sauvignon Antiguas Reservas 2008 (Maipo Valley). Complex and layered smells of bacon, cassis, blackberry, coffee, cream, tar, and licorice. David noted "freshly paved road". A little jammy at first and then it burns off, leading to cumin, butter, caramel corn, and sports store. Tart in the beginning, then moving to a midpalate that's bright, light on tannins, and tasting of dark meats. Ali found "aluminum in middle" and Andy noted "clove honey". Bitter chocolate on the finish. Overall, Andy felt it was "the brighter side of cabernet", and Josephine felt that it "doesn't deliver on the dark notes". Received 7 points. Kristin's bottle. About $16.
Concha Y Toro Cabernet Sauvignon Casillero del Diablo 2009 (Central Valley). Metallic, sour notes to start off with, then changing to green bell pepper, oregano, pencil shavings, bread dough, feces, decomposing leaves, and candied strawberries. Yeasty, like fermentation is still happening. Katie noted "sour meat". Darker on the palate, featuring licorice, salty meat, iodized salt, and cranberries. Josephine found "roast beef on the sides of your tongue" along with parsley notes. Ali felt it was "herbal on attack, but then it goes away". Received 3 points. Katie's bottle. About $12.
Calina Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 (Maule Valley). A little funky on the nose, showing fecal, dusty, wet cardboard, and Smarties notes. Katie noted "blue raspberry pixie stick & public restroom". A little closed, with hints of cherry, flat cola, plastic wrap, and candied fruit. Flat in the mouth. Not bad, but nothing exciting. Ashtray on finish. Undistinguished. Showed black tea notes, which Josephine refined as "like, Lipton; not something good". David felt it was "innocuous", and tasters found some burnt marshmallow notes showing later. Received 2 points. Josephine's bottle. About $12.