2020 Triple C – Santa Rita
Style: Red
Country: Chile
Region: Maipo Valley
Grape: Bordeaux Red
Score: 90-94
Price: 50-75 euro

2020 Triple C – Santa Rita.

Chile’s wine industry has many faces, with different growing regions, grape varieties and quality and price levels. A large part of the country’s production comes from the Central Valley region, suitable for growing a wide variety of grapes. In this review we are discussing a Bordeaux blend with three grape varieties from the Maipo Valley, named after its leading characters: Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Carménère. Produced by Santa Rita winery.

About the Winery 

Founded in 1880 by the visionary Don Domingo Fernández Concha, Viña Santa Rita has a rich legacy of pioneering winemaking in Chile. Don Domingo, a prominent businessman and public figure, introduced the finest French grape varieties to the fertile soils of the Maipo Valley. He brought in specialized equipment and top French winemakers, revolutionizing Chilean viticulture with techniques previously unknown in the country. This forward-thinking approach set the stage for the spectacular wines that Santa Rita would become renowned for.

In 1980, Viña Santa Rita entered a new era under the ownership of the Claro Group. This transition marked a significant leap in quality and business acumen. The new owners invested heavily in the winery, enhancing its capabilities and expanding its export markets by the late 1980s. They also introduced a range of technological innovations that allowed Santa Rita to craft wines of exceptional quality, setting new standards in the Chilean wine industry.

Today, Viña Santa Rita stands as one of the world’s largest wine companies, with 3,980 hectares of vineyards spread across Chile and Argentina. The winery’s expansive vineyard holdings cover both well-known and emerging wine regions, providing a diverse portfolio that showcases the versatility of Chilean terroir. Santa Rita’s commitment to excellence is evident in every bottle, from entry-level offerings to iconic wines.

The expertise of Santa Rita’s winemaking teams, each led by a dedicated head winemaker, ensures that the winery produces a wide range of wines that cater to different tastes and price points. This versatility, combined with a steadfast focus on quality, sustainability, and innovation, positions Santa Rita as a leader in the industry. The winery’s dedication to producing premium Cabernet Sauvignon wines, in particular, is a key focus for the coming years.

Viña Santa Rita’s commitment to excellence has been recognized with numerous awards and accolades over the years. The winery continues to leverage the latest and most advanced technologies to create exquisite wines across its product lines. Whether you’re seeking an approachable table wine or a luxurious, age-worthy vintage, Santa Rita’s portfolio promises a remarkable wine experience, reflecting the rich heritage and innovative spirit that have defined the winery for over a century.

About the Wine

Santa Rita’s 2020 Triple C is a masterful Chilean reinterpretation of the classic Bordeaux blend, comprising Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Carménère. Recognized in 2019 as one of the top 100 wines for cellaring, this blend showcases the unique terroir of Chile with a sophisticated elegance.

The Triple C’s distinct character is a testament to its origins. The Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon hail from the Maipo Alto Jahuel Valley, known for its colluvial, loamy-sandy-clay soils with excellent drainage. This terroir imparts a unique minerality and freshness to the wine. The Carménère, sourced from 80-year-old vines in the Apalta Valley of Colchagua, adds a local flair with its hallmark spice and depth. Santa Rita’s meticulous vineyard management and the hydric stress applied to the Cabernet Sauvignon vines ensure optimal ripeness and concentration.

This wine greets the eye with an intense ruby red hue, a precursor to its vibrant personality. The nose is a rich tapestry of aromas—black cherry, dark chocolate, and liquorice dominate, underpinned by the distinct graphite notes contributed by the Cabernet Franc. The aromatic complexity is further enhanced by florals and red fruit nuances, creating a bouquet that is both inviting and intriguing.

On the palate, the Triple C offers a harmonious balance of flavors and textures. The Cabernet Franc’s richness of red fruits and florals is beautifully complemented by the spicy undertones of the Carménère and the structured intensity of the Cabernet Sauvignon. Each sip reveals firm, reactive tannins that provide a vibrant and engaging mouthfeel. The wine’s structure is robust yet elegant, with a seamless integration of oak influences—courtesy of its 18-month aging in a mix of new and second-use French oak barrels.

This wine is designed for longevity. Its concentrated, well-balanced profile and good structure suggest it will continue to develop complexity over the coming years. The firm tannins and depth of flavor make it an excellent candidate for cellaring, promising a rewarding evolution for those with the patience to wait.

The 2020 Triple C by Santa Rita is a testament to Chile’s winemaking prowess, offering a unique twist on the traditional Bordeaux blend. Its combination of elegance, complexity, and robust structure makes it a standout wine, perfect for both immediate enjoyment and long-term aging. Whether you’re a seasoned wine collector or a casual enthusiast, the Triple C promises a memorable and rewarding experience.

We award this Chilean interpretation of a Bordeaux blend with a 92-point DWA score.

This review is written by our own Niels Aarts. The wines of Santa Rita are imported by Dutch importer Verbunt Verlinden and available through selected retail and hospitality partners.

Price:                          €55,00

Taste date:                May 2024

Score:                         92/100 DWA Score

Website:                    Santa Rita