New Releases from William Cole Vineyards of Casablanca Valley

ART Cole logo 2The William Cole Vineyards is a family-owned and managed winery started by Bill Cole. It has 129 hectares of vineyards in Chile’s cool climate Casablanca Valley, located just 45 kilometers from the Pacific.  Viviana Fonseca, a graduate of the University of Chile, is winemaker. New Zealander Peter Mackay is consulting winemaker.   See below for our tasting notes of the new William Cole new releases, including the new high end line called “Bill”.

Bill Cole

Bill Cole

Three lines of William Cole wines are imported to the US. Albamar is the entry level wine, offering pure wines at low prices. The Columbine Reserve line offers moderately priced wines that, also, offer very good value. Finally, the Bill line consists of small lots of top quality wines.  The wines are well crafted and show excellent balance and purity of fruit.

A Pinot Noir varietal is offered in all three lines.  For more on Chilean Pinot Noir, see our article on The New Pinot Noirs of Chile Also, see our Report # 21 The Chilean Wine Revolution for an in-depth look at diverse wines and growing regions of Chile.

William Cole Vineyards is imported to America by Global Vineyard Importers of Berkeley CA.

Tasting Notes

Albamar 2012 Sauvignon Blanc Casablanca Valley ($11) 88+  Made by William Cole Vineyards, this wine shows both tropical and herbal notes.  On the palate it has a saline, seashell character to it that makes it a perfect match to `raw oysters, sushi, and other shell fish. Very flavorful and fresh.

Albamar 2012 Chardonnay Casablanca ($12) 87  Clean, fresh and easy drinking, this wine shows good balance and excellent freshness. Unwooded and quite straightforward in character, it’s a good weekday wine.

Albamar 2011 Pinot Noir Casablanca Valley ($13) 88  Medium-light red in color, this is an appealing entry level Pinot Noir showing pure red cherry aromas and flavors with a stemmy note.  Light and fruit forward, the wine is refreshing, clean and quite pretty.

William Cole 2011 Columbine Reserve Pinot Noir Casablanca Valley ($16) 88 Richly fragrant of red cherry this wine shows surprising elegance and focus for an inexpensive Pinot Noir. It’s fruit forward with good intensity and purity of flavor, with a persistent red-noted finish. Matured 6 months in French oak.

William Cole 2011 Bill Sauvignon Blanc Casablanca Valley ($27) 91  A beautiful, rich Sauvignon Blanc with a beautiful mélange of lychee, guava and citrus aromas and flavors. Dense with a polished, creamy palate, complex flavors and rich extract on the finish. New World Sauvignon Blanc at its best. Fermented and aged in French oak for 4 months.

William Cole 2011 Bill Chardonnay Casablanca Valley ($30) 90+  A big step up from the regular bottling, this barrel fermented Chardonnay is dry with tropical fruit on the nose and palate along with a note of chalky minerals.  It’s very well balanced and long on the palate. Aged in French oak for 10 months.

ART Cole Foto 3William Cole 2010 Bill Pinot Noir Casablanca Valley ($35) 91  This is one of the better Pinot Noirs we’ve tasted from Chile.  Dark red cherry and an earth note show on the nose with the addition of plum and a savory note in the mouth.  There’s a lovely velvet smooth feel in the mouth along with good balance and depth. Made from low-yielding (6 tons/ha) vineyards and aged 12 months in French oak.

Mike Potashnik and Don Winkler

January 2013


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