Grapelive: Wine of the Day September 2, 2018

2016 Vina Maitia, Pais/Carignan “Aupa” Pipeno, Maule Valley, Chile.
Made from 120 year vines in the Maule Valley, the Aupa Pipeno by Vina Maitia is an old school country wine made from a blend of 80% Pais (Listan) and 20% Carignan with a short and light maceration/ferment that makes it easy and fresh in style. The Pipeno, a term for the way they used to carry the wine in tubes/pipes filled from large casks and sold fresh is an old Chilean tradition and it’s been revived in these new versions and sold for export made from the mission and old vine grapes, the old Chile is now the new Chile and highlight the country’s rich wine history that started back with the Spanish explorer era in the early 1,500’s. Grown on a mix of granite and volcanic soils the Listan Prieto (Mission Grape) gives earthy/spicy character to the Pipeno, while Carignan adds a bit more depth of fruit and generosity. Light fruity and spicy this is a fun and easy quaffer. coming in at under 13% (12.9%) natural alcohol is feels nice and fresh with a light garnet and bricky hue. Pipeno and Pais based wines are a throw back styles and they are really catching on, especially with those that want more authentic Chilean flavors, that transmit the different terroirs, from either granite or volcanic soils, instead of international themed offerings. Tangy red fruits lead the way with poached cherries, strawberry, raspberry and fresh stone fruit on the palate along with minty herb, pepper spice, leather and ground cinnamon. A bit of crisp acidity keeps things lifted and elements of citrus rind, dusty stones and dried flowers come through with air and food, it’s not a casual sipping wine, it truly needs cuisine to show it’s best, but it’s flexible enough to go with most any simple dish from sea food to cheeses and good with a slight chill for outdoor events and BBQ, drink this juicy/savory Pipeno now.
($12 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive