Juan Sutil Servoin
Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania
Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Carménère, PX, Sauvignon blanc, chardonnay
501 total ha
“Chono is the cutting edge of Chilean winemaking—a micro-estate that produces world-class wines from some of the most unique terroirs in the country. Founded by two of South America’s leading winemakers and enologists, Alvaro Espinoza and Juan Carlos Faúndez (who have since moved on to other projects), Chono too is the future of the Chilean wine industry, as producers move away their quantity-over-quality past to focus on Chile’s terroir strengths.
Winemaker Alvaro Espinoza was one of the first winemakers to identify Carmenère, a red grape previously thought to be (and grown as) Merlot. It is actually a pre-phylloxera grape that was once grown widely in Bordeaux, but today grows exclusively in Chile.
The winemaking team of Espinoza and Faúndez is what makes Chono so exceptional. Espinoza cut his wine teeth both in Chile and abroad, working for Chilean winery Carmen, Chateau Margaux in Bordeaux and Fetzer and Bonterra in California. During his time in California, Espinoza worked with biodynamic expert Alan York, who helped open Espinoza’s eyes not only to the possibilities of organic viticulture but also the ways such practices could be applied to Chile. Faúndez, who also spent time at Carmen, teamed up with Alvaro early on, instructed and inspired by Alvaro’s father, a prominent enologist who instilled in both young winemakers a passion for hard work and for Chile’s undeniable potential.
In addition to wines from the Maipo Valley, Chono sources grapes from the Elqui Valley as well as the Rapel Valley. Most vineyards are either farmed organically or are in transition to organic farming.”
“Cucao takes its name from the classic vineyard bird, the Cucao, that is said to bring good luck if you can hear them sing. The bird’s colors, black and yellow, are represented on the wine’s labels.
Cucao is a premium label that brings together the finest Chilean terroirs and most naturally grown grapes.
Chile’s most influential enologist and winemaker, Alvaro Espinoza, started selecting grapes for Cucao from growers who either farm their higher-elevation vineyards organically or as naturally as possible. Alvaro has since moved on to his smaller briodynamic projects. Whether from the sea-influenced vineyards of the Casablanca Valley, renowned for its Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay wines, or the Rapel Valley, where Carmenère grows to perfect ripeness, Cucao wines are always harvested by hand and vinified as naturally as possible. Cucao wines are also aged with great care, in a combination of French and American oak for approximately six months.”
“Rayun represents the awakening of a new form of viticulture and winemaking in which the respect for nature, the environment and the people is the essence of the wine. Our philosophy is to seek out the proper combination of conditions that enables our wines to express the full potential of our vineyards.
These wines from the Limarí, Maipo and Colchagua Valleys offer tremendous delicacy and complexity that demonstrate the authenticity of our enology.”