Tag Archive for: Chilean Wine

Finn McCool and Jude

It’s funny how much of what we do at Hannibal Brown revolves around our own worldly experiences.  Just this week, we took stock of some fancy new spotlights to light up Finn’s mudpatch (previously known as the garden).  For those of you who don’t know Finn, he is Hannibal Brown’s resident gentle giant pooch and a regular contributor to our Virtual Wine Events.  Just last night, Finn sat stock still as we presented wines online to the lovely folk at Boston Consulting Group who were charmed by his on-screen wine interest (ok, dangling doggy treats does help keep him focussed).  Back to the mudpatch, it’s amazing what a little spotlight can do to conjure curiosity and general wow – the trees (and mud) are now lit up good and proper and the neighbours are dead impressed.

Spotlight on Perez CruzSo it got me thinking about putting a spotlight on some of our wines.  We often talk about our wines with enthusiasm, but now is the time to really turn up the light on some of our lesser known wines.

Starting today, we are launching our ‘Spotlight on…‘ series.  Each week will see added focus on an individual wine of our choice.  It may be a new addition or it may be an old wine that we’ve neglected to talk about for a while.  Either way, the plan is to share some juicy nuggets of info on the wine or winery to whet your curiosity and – who knows – maybe even entice you to buy a bottle!   We’re kicking off the series with our limited edition Carmenere from the Perez Cruz> family estate in Chile, closely followed by the ripe, flavour-filled Maray Viognier from the Limari valley, south of Atacama.   We hope you enjoy discovering a little more in this series.

Everyone agrees that the simple things in life tend to be the best ones.  And when it comes to marrying the right food and wine combinations, there is nothing better.  But it’s a tricky old business and for years I worked with top chefs and sommeliers, trying to work out the ultimate combos, so often failing.  More often than not, we settled for ‘satisfactory’ combinations.  Which is why it is the ultimate joy when you hit upon perfection – like a Blue Moon, perfection doesn’t happen very often so we shout about it when it does. Tartare with egg

Here’s one that Jude came up with the other day in anticipation of our Lockdown Live event for Race Against Dementia (Wed 4th Nov 7pm) and wow, were we blown away. The secret is in the curing of the egg – the texture of the yolk becomes rich, creamy and substantial – if you’ve never tried this, give it a go.  It’s a mind-blower!

Beef Tartare with Cured Egg Yolk accompanied by Casas del Bosque Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva


The fabulous Villarica Winery (the home of our delicious Villarica VolcanoChilean Villarica Merlot was named after one of Chile’s most active volcanoes.  There are just a handful of volcanoes in the world that have active lava lakes within their crater.    This is one of them.  If you’re flying to Chile, be sure to drop off in the Maule Valley and hire a helicopter for the day!

Following in the footsteps of other explorers of great wine, I discovered that grapes grown in volcanic ash have mixed results.  In Hawaii, they tend to blend grape wine with pulp fruits (I won’t be listing those), but in Sicily, the local grape Nerello Mascalese has made impressive wines since the ’90s.  Powerful, intense with quirky qualities, with the suggestion that you can almost taste the ash in them!

By the way, Villarica last erupted in 2008,  Etna erupted in 2012 and Kilauea on Hawaii has been continuously erupting since 1983.