The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Expert Picks: Bodega Chacra and…Bodega Chacra!

Posted on | February 4, 2015 | Written by Crystal Edgar | No Comments

Crystal 2014When asked about my favorite wine or region or producer, I can’t give a straight answer. Similar to my music preferences, my beverage preferences tend to follow my mood and the occasion. Like a good resident of Williamsburg, I appreciate wine (and music) with an element of surprise, producers found off the beaten path, winemakers who offer that “je ne sais qua” to their repertoire. I certainly don’t consider myself a hipster by any means; however, there are certain winemakers that could fall into the effortlessly cool category, and one that comes to mind is Bodega Chacra’s Piero Incisa della Rocchetta .

For those who are not yet familiar with Bodega Chacra’s “edgy” Pinot Noir, this biodynamic estate in Argentina’s Rio Negro valley crafts a selection of beautiful single-vineyard wines from gnarled 80-year old (pre-phylloxera) Pinot Noir vines in Patagonia. The estate’s success can be attributed to its visionary winemaker and the unique Argentine landscape. The Sassicaia prodigy embodies the same spirit and passion that drove his grandfather to think outside the box and create something extraordinary in Bolgheri. And, much in the way that Sassicaia distinguishes itself from others in the Super-Tuscan category by producing honest wines of elegance and complexity, the Pinot Noir of Bodega Chacra captures these same driving attributes.

Whenever I taste these wines with clients, I find there is an instant element of surprise and intrigue. The purity of red fruit, silky texture and lingering nuances of spice and earth are an easy fit for the Pinotphile, but also the classic Barolo enthusiast that appreciate elegance and finesse over extraction and power.

Bodega Chacra Pinot Noir Rio Negro Cincuenta y Cinco 2011 $60.00

This Pinot Noir comes from vines planted in 1955 (hence the Spanish numbered name) and it’s one of the most vibrant, fresh yet rich and intense pinots I have tasted. The balance of acid, tannin and fruit is very impressive; it’s an ideal match with grilled lamb, roasted duck or goose or a simple spaghetti Bolognese. If you are not sure what wine to bring to a dinner party, this wine is a home run every time whether you are a novice or connoisseur.

Bodega Chacra Pinot Noir Rio Negro Treinta y Dos 2010 $130.00

This wine needs undivided attention as it defies the idea of New World Pinot can be. Sourced from vines planted in 1932, this gorgeous multi-layered Pinot Noir can be enjoyed now with a few hours in the decanter or kept in the cellar for another decade. If you want a wine to rattle you up and keep you on your toes, this is the bottle for you.


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