Casablanca Valley Private Wine Tour: Casas del Bosque and Emiliana Wineries
In coastal Casablanca Valley, cool foggy mornings and ocean breezes allow grapes to ripen slowly, resulting in top-notch sauvignon blanc, chardonnay and pinot noir. On this full-day tour from Santiago, visit two award-winning wineries ó Casas del Bosque and Emiliana ó and enjoy a private tour of vineyards and cellars. Learn about the visionaries who recognized the winemaking potential of this valley and helped turn it into a terroir phenomenon. Taste four fresh, crisp wines at each winery. A private driver will chauffeur your group to and from your hotel.After hotel pickup in Santiago by private vehicle, travel for about an hour northwest of the city into Casablanca Valley, located in the province of Valparaiso near the coast. Arrive at Casas del Bosque, which translates to Houses of the Forest, surrounded by olive trees. During the 45-minute tour, you’ll stroll by vineyards and visit the cellar where the family-owned winery cultivates its popular sauvignon blanc, pinot noir and syrah, among other varieties. It’s a labor of love that earned founder Juan Cuneo Solari the Chilean Winery of the Year award in 2013 at the International Wine and Spirit Competition. In its Aromas Bar, sample wine from two Reserva and two Gran Reserva labels (four tastings total). After the winery tour concludes, take a break and purchase lunch at the on-site restaurant, or ask your driver for a recommendation in the area.Refueled and ready for more vino adventures, head to Emiliana, a pioneer in organic and biodynamic wine that has won international acclaim for its green practices. As your private guide leads you through gardens, learn about how the winery is 100-percent organic. Then wander through vineyards, where your guide explains how the extremely permeable and largely sandy-loam soils, combined with the cool and salty Pacific breeze, yield a variety of grapes. In the cellar, hear about the biodynamic methods applied to the Emilianaís Adobe, Novas, Signos de Origen or Coyam labels that you get to taste.Spend your remaining time admiring views of verdant hills and bright blooms on the property; the occasional peacock may cross your path. Cap off your visit with a trip to the wine shop to purchase a bottle (or bottles) to enjoy when you get home, or if you can’t resist, back at your hotel when you are dropped off in the early evening.