Eats and treats

Casillero del Diablo

From the start the name had intrigued us – Casillero del Diablo, the Devil’s Cellar?! The story goes that 120 or so years ago the founder of the Concha y Toro winery in Chile, Don Melchor, discovered that some of his best wine was missing from his private cellar. To deter thieves, he put about the story that the cellar was where the Devil lived. The thieves were deterred, the wine got a name.

Casillero del Diablo wines (red and white) are the result of selected grapes grown in Chile’s award-winning winemaking regions – from the Limari Valley in the north to the Maule Valley in the south.

And remarkably good wine it is too; since 2008 the wines have received more than 125 awards from internationally recognised wine competitions, including 13 gold and 30 silver medals.

Look out for Casillero del Diablo Carmenère. The carmenère grape variety once flourished in Europe but the dreaded vine epidemic phylloxera killed off virtually all the vines. The carmenère variety was thought to be extinct.

But when European immigrants began producing wine in Chile they realised that what they had thought was a merlot grape variety was in fact carmenère. Because of its unique growing locations and conditions in Chile the vines had been spared the phylloxera disease, and the wine that this grape variety was producing was something rather special.

Tasting notes talk of berry flavours, mocha notes and a subtle spiciness which goes beautifully with spicy meat dishes – think Chilli con Carne. RRP £7.99 per bottle.

Casillero del Diablo Cabernet Sauvignon. Whilst we love Cabernet Sauvignon’s rich colour we’ve sometimes found it to be too big a wine for us. However, we do like Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon finding it a tad more velvety than some of its cousins and with lovely flavours of cassis, plum and cherry. This wine is no exception. RRP £7.99 per bottle.

Casillero del Diablo Merlot. We like Merlot, maybe because we find its tannin less pronounced, and we really liked this smooth, medium bodied wine. We can quite happily drink it on its own, but we found it even better with a meal. It goes well with red meat and we also liked it with poultry. RRP £7.99 per bottle.

Casillero del Diablo wines are available nationwide. www.casillerodeldiablo.com 

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