Concha y Toro Winery
The Concha y Toro winery, located in Pirque, in the Maipo Valley, 45 minutes outside of Santiago, has steadily been making wine since it was originally established back in 1883. Upon arriving, visitors are taken on a fantastic tour of the grounds. You begin in the tasting room, where you sample a few of their choice selections of white wines. The tour then takes you around the grounds, through the vineyards, and eventually into the bowels of the winery where you will learn about the cellar Casillero del Diablo! Legend has it that the fine wines that reside in the cellar below are not only great libations, but are also eerily protected by the Devil himself (pictured above). Some will not venture to the cellar, some say they know people who have not returned from the cellar, while others claim to have glimpsed a shadow or a flicker that gave them the chills, so they quickly fled back to the safety of the daylight above.
By Matthew Keesecker, AFAR Local Expert
Autumn in Maipo Wine Country
Located in the foothills of Chile's Central Andes, the Maipo Valley lies only 45-60 minutes from the capital by car. Many of Chile's historic wineries like Santa Rita or Concha y Toro are headquartered here along with a smattering of high-end boutique wineries making stellar wine. This area of the Maipo closest to the Andes has some of the best terroir for Cabernet Sauvignon in the world. Reds are robust yet elegant with smooth tannins and a remarkable longevity. Head out on your own by car to check out the wine route, or coordinate a tour in advance. During crush (April-May), the countryside air often smells of fermented juice.
By Liz Caskey, AFAR Local Expert
Pirque, Santiago Metropolitan Region, Chile