Undurraga Winery Half-Day Tour from Santiago
Leave the crowds of Santiago and spend the morning at Undurraga winery in sweeping Maipo Valley. Surrounded by the rolling foothills of the Andes, explore a century-old garden park, sprawling vineyards and old cellars. Consider the technical side of winemaking on visits to a soil analysis test pit and a vinification plant, and observe artifacts of the indigenous Mapuche culture at Aliwen Corner. Top off the tour with three tastings of wine from the reserve label and take home your glass as a souvenir. Round-trip hotel transport is included.After hotel pickup from Santiago, travel south of the city for about 30 minutes and arrive at Undurraga winery, part of Santa Ana Estate in Talagante, located in the renowned winemaking region of Maipo Valley. Against the dramatic backdrop of the Andes foothills, enter a gorgeous garden wonderland of Lebanese cedar, redwoods, date palms and Japanese maple trees, grounds designed in the late 19th century by George Henry Dubois, a famous French architect of that time. During the 1-hour winery tour, youíll learn more about how founder Don Francisco Undurraga worked with French experts in developing his winery. At the vineyards, listen to how the entrepreneurial owner carried grape plants in lead capsules from Germany and France and began cultivating vines on his plot of land in Maipo Valley. By 1885, the vineyards produced varietals for cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc, merlot, pinot noir, riesling and gewºrztraminer. The winery was the first to export Chilean wine to the US and since then, Neil Armstrong, kings, queens and heads of state have strolled through this lush property and tasted its award-winning wines.Descend into antique stone and mortar cellars and amid the rows of wood barrels, learn how the winery ages its reserve wine in these casks. Visit a soil analysis testing pit, a small underground viewing area where you can see how far down vine roots grow in marked layers of soil. You’ll also check out a vinification plant and learn the process of how grapes are plucked, de-stemmed, crushed, pressed, fermented and bottled.At Aliwen Corner, browse through a private museum-quality collection of artifacts relating to the Mapuche, indigenous inhabitants of south-central Chile and southwestern Argentina.The winery tour ends at the wine bar, where youíll enjoy three tastings from the reserve label, which depending on availability may be Sibaris, Aliwen or sparkling wines. Take your wine glass as a parting souvenir, and then during your remaining time before returning to Santiago, visit the wine shop for bottles to take home.