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Wine of the week: 2013 Santa Rita Secret Reserve Red Blend 

Maipo, Chile

Retail $11

In 1880, Domingo Fernandez Concha was convinced that Chile's Maipo Valley could produce wine grapes equal in quality to the finest vineyards of Bordeaux, France. Today the Maipo Valley, the closest wine region to Chile's capital of Santiago, often is called the Bordeaux of South America. The Secret Reserve derives its understated power from five grapes, four of which are mainstays of Bordeaux wines. This bottling contains 53 percent cabernet sauvignon, 20 percent merlot, 15 percent syrah (which is not a Bordeaux grape), 7 percent petit verdot and 5 percent carmenere, the hallmark grape of the Chilean wine industry. The varietals are kept separate throughout harvesting and vinification. The result is an enchanting blend of red and black fruit, with strawberry yielding to raspberry, black currants and blackberry. There also are notes of vanilla, cloves, nutmeg, violets and cocoa. Decant 20 minutes before serving. Drink it with rare steak, pork tenderloin, veal chops and firm, aged cheeses. Buy it at: Rouses Market on Tchoupitoulas Street.


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