Concha y Toro

Don Melchor Puente Alto Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

9.3565 ratings
9.268 pro ratings
Puente Alto, Maipo Valley, Central Valley, Chile
Cabernet Sauvignon
Top Notes For
David T

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

9.4

The first Don Melchor from my storage and it’s very good but still early. I won’t open another for at least 5 years or more. The nose on first open showed ruby dark currants. As it opened up in the two hour decant, it’s nose changed and showed some earthy funkiness with a fair amount of mushroom. Dark currants, blackberries, dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, overly baked strawberries, blueberries, black cherry cola, dark dry soils, dry crushed rocks, dry stems, soft leather, lead pencil shavings, dry stones, mushrooms, darker Asian spices, mint, dry herbs, anise, tarry notes, black tea, lilacs and fresh & dry dark florals. The body is full, round, lush & elegant. The tannins are round & beautiful, but only 50% resolved. The palate matches the nose very closely. Dark currants, blackberries, dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, overly baked strawberries, blueberries, black cherry cola, dark chocolate & mocha, dark dry soils, dry crushed rocks, dry stems, soft leather, lead pencil shavings, tobacco with ash, dry stones, darker Asian spices, mint, dry herbs, anise, tarry notes, black tea, lilacs and fresh & dry dark florals. The acidity is round & beautiful. The length, balance, structure and tension are extremely solid. The finish is still big, full, round, richly elegant and lasts minutes. Photos of; their beautiful Estate, harvested fruit, a library cellar that I think we’d all like to raid and their barrel room with tasting area. Producer history and notes...Concha y Toro was founded by Don Melchor de Santiago Concha y Toro and his wife, Emiliana Subercaseaux, in 1883. They are the largest producer of wines from Latin America and are headquartered in Santiago, Chile. They own 8,720 hectares spread throughout Chile's major wine regions of; Maipo, Maule, Rapel, Colchagua, Curico, and Casablanca. He started the winery with grape varieties that he brought from Bordeaux. The grapes he brought were; Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Merlot, and Carmenère. Concha y Toro started exporting wine in March of 1933 to the port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands. In 1950, the winery began to acquire more vineyards. They also began the process of adapting its wine to new markets and meeting a higher demand. In 1971, Eduardo Guilisasti Tagle became Chairman of the Board and succeeded in expanding the company. In 1987, they partnered with the U.S. importer Banfi Vintners. This partnership advanced sales and were able to incorporate more advanced technology in all stages of their production. They also started using small French oak barriques that further advanced the quality of their wines. In 2011, Concha y Toro bought the California portfolio of wines from Brown-Forman. The portfolio included these properties; Fetzer, Bonterra, Five River Wines, Bel Arbor Wines, Jekel Vinyards, Coldwater Creek, Sanctuary Wines Little Black Dress Wines. They are now a huge company with nearly a billion dollars in revenues annually. Don Melchor was Chile’s first iconic wine and has received with few exceptions consistent 90+ Parker scores since 1995. Most in the mid 90 range. This 04 is an excellent example of what they can produce in Chile. If I put this in a blind tasting, many would guess Bordeaux and some Napa Cabernet.

The first Don Melchor from my storage and it’s very good but still early. I won’t open another for at least 5 years or more. The nose on first open showed ruby dark currants. As it opened up in the two hour decant, it’s nose changed and showed some earthy funkiness with a fair amount of mushroom. Dark currants, blackberries, dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, overly baked strawberries, blueberries, black cherry cola, dark dry soils, dry crushed rocks, dry stems, soft leather, lead pencil shavings, dry stones, mushrooms, darker Asian spices, mint, dry herbs, anise, tarry notes, black tea, lilacs and fresh & dry dark florals. The body is full, round, lush & elegant. The tannins are round & beautiful, but only 50% resolved. The palate matches the nose very closely. Dark currants, blackberries, dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, overly baked strawberries, blueberries, black cherry cola, dark chocolate & mocha, dark dry soils, dry crushed rocks, dry stems, soft leather, lead pencil shavings, tobacco with ash, dry stones, darker Asian spices, mint, dry herbs, anise, tarry notes, black tea, lilacs and fresh & dry dark florals. The acidity is round & beautiful. The length, balance, structure and tension are extremely solid. The finish is still big, full, round, richly elegant and lasts minutes. Photos of; their beautiful Estate, harvested fruit, a library cellar that I think we’d all like to raid and their barrel room with tasting area. Producer history and notes...Concha y Toro was founded by Don Melchor de Santiago Concha y Toro and his wife, Emiliana Subercaseaux, in 1883. They are the largest producer of wines from Latin America and are headquartered in Santiago, Chile. They own 8,720 hectares spread throughout Chile's major wine regions of; Maipo, Maule, Rapel, Colchagua, Curico, and Casablanca. He started the winery with grape varieties that he brought from Bordeaux. The grapes he brought were; Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Merlot, and Carmenère. Concha y Toro started exporting wine in March of 1933 to the port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands. In 1950, the winery began to acquire more vineyards. They also began the process of adapting its wine to new markets and meeting a higher demand. In 1971, Eduardo Guilisasti Tagle became Chairman of the Board and succeeded in expanding the company. In 1987, they partnered with the U.S. importer Banfi Vintners. This partnership advanced sales and were able to incorporate more advanced technology in all stages of their production. They also started using small French oak barriques that further advanced the quality of their wines. In 2011, Concha y Toro bought the California portfolio of wines from Brown-Forman. The portfolio included these properties; Fetzer, Bonterra, Five River Wines, Bel Arbor Wines, Jekel Vinyards, Coldwater Creek, Sanctuary Wines Little Black Dress Wines. They are now a huge company with nearly a billion dollars in revenues annually. Don Melchor was Chile’s first iconic wine and has received with few exceptions consistent 90+ Parker scores since 1995. Most in the mid 90 range. This 04 is an excellent example of what they can produce in Chile. If I put this in a blind tasting, many would guess Bordeaux and some Napa Cabernet.

Nov 5th, 2017
Alex Rodriguez

Classic expression of a Cabernet blend. Drink. Now.

Classic expression of a Cabernet blend. Drink. Now.

Oct 19th, 2017
Stephen Bonner

Elegant Bordeaux inspired Cab. Silky tannins with flavours of cassis, plum, coffee, chocolate, and pencil lead. Complex.

Elegant Bordeaux inspired Cab. Silky tannins with flavours of cassis, plum, coffee, chocolate, and pencil lead. Complex.

3 people found it helpfulOct 16th, 2015
Peter Plaehn

Oh, hello there. The things you find when you're invited to crash a South American tasting...

Oh, hello there. The things you find when you're invited to crash a South American tasting...

3 people found it helpfulJun 23rd, 2015
Marcela Baruch

Food/Wine Journalist, Sommelier

10

One of the greatest Chilenean cab's. An elegant middle age man aging gracefully

One of the greatest Chilenean cab's. An elegant middle age man aging gracefully

2 people found it helpfulJan 5th, 2015
Tom Kobylarz

One of the best and most consistent wines out of South America, Cabernet fans take notice as this is classic with currants and spiced cherry, cassis too. Meaty notes play off green and cracked pepper savory spices.

One of the best and most consistent wines out of South America, Cabernet fans take notice as this is classic with currants and spiced cherry, cassis too. Meaty notes play off green and cracked pepper savory spices.

2 people found it helpfulNov 19th, 2014
Becky Holmes

Great full cab paired with steak and lamb. Fruity, tad sweet, hint of tobacco or something smoky sweet. Not as good as the 2006 though.

Great full cab paired with steak and lamb. Fruity, tad sweet, hint of tobacco or something smoky sweet. Not as good as the 2006 though.

2 people found it helpfulJun 26th, 2014
Andrew Lampasone

Owner Wine Watch Selections

9.5

17 brands this is the top iconic wine there is a bit if Cabernet franc in the blend a bit closed there'd is da strong earthy component to the bouquet peppery spicecoffee and dried herbs and dark cherry currant berry fruit needs time to open tightly wound dark coco and form tannins needs time very nicely balanced finish 50+ most excellent

17 brands this is the top iconic wine there is a bit if Cabernet franc in the blend a bit closed there'd is da strong earthy component to the bouquet peppery spicecoffee and dried herbs and dark cherry currant berry fruit needs time to open tightly wound dark coco and form tannins needs time very nicely balanced finish 50+ most excellent

2 people found it helpfulMay 28th, 2014
John Cavanaugh

Very good wine. Poor man's Opus one.

Very good wine. Poor man's Opus one.

2 people found it helpfulApr 13th, 2014
John Kemper

The glass-etching inky, ruby '06 Concha y Toro Cabernet Sauvignon 'Don Melchor' is a beautifully layered wine. Lovely aromas of ripe plums, oak spices, leather and cocoa meld into sweet raisin and cassis flavors. This precise, well-balanced Old World-style wine finishes long, warm and creamy.

The glass-etching inky, ruby '06 Concha y Toro Cabernet Sauvignon 'Don Melchor' is a beautifully layered wine. Lovely aromas of ripe plums, oak spices, leather and cocoa meld into sweet raisin and cassis flavors. This precise, well-balanced Old World-style wine finishes long, warm and creamy.

2 people found it helpfulJun 23rd, 2013