Decanter Magazine has called this wine "one of the best Chardonnays in the world outside of Burgundy".
Tabalí has a strong focus in quality and because of that it has gained outstanding reputation over the last years, including some awards like: Best winemaker of Chile (twice), top 15 producer from Chile by Decanter, and many 90+ Parker points, among other accolades.
About the winery
The Winery was built and designed to recall the lifestyle of the Molle Culture. These ancestors of northern Chile lived in ravines to protect themselves from the intense heat and to be able to get water, vegetation and shade. Tabalí was built in a ravine and it is naturally integrated into the environment.
A small scale, exclusive, family winery focused on details.
The winery is built in such a way that the fruit and wine are transported by gravity. The winery aims to avoid any unnecessary pumping and relies on nature to do the work where possible.
The wines are aged in French oak barrels coming from very exclusive forests as Jupille, Fontainbleau, Bertrange, Troncais and Allier. The winery’s cellar capacity is 2,000 barrels.
About the winemaker
Felipe Müller was born and raised in Santiago, Chile’s capital. Today, at the age of 41, he is considered one of the country´s most influential and important winemakers.
He graduated in Agronomy with a distinction in Oenology and Viticulture from the renowned Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. He was honored for having the best score in the examination of Oenologist at the College of Agricultural Oenologist Engineers of Chile and later received a special mentioning for having the second best wine thesis of his generation.
In 2001 he joined Viña De Martino as second winemaker, in charge of viticulture as well as the vinification for red and white wines. In this winery he worked together with winemaker Marcelo Retamal, and formed a bold and renowned "Wine dupla". Together they investigated new wines, studied in depth various valleys and regions of Chile and vinificated around 350 vineyards throughout the country.
Later, as part of his investigations, Felipe harvested at two famous Chateaux Grand Cru Classé in Saint Emilion in France: Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere and Chateau La Mondotte. He also travelled to Australia to visit the major areas such as Adelaide Hills, Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, and King Valley. Together with a group of prestigious expert geologists, Felipe visited the most exclusive areas and vineyards in each region of France, such as Bordeaux, Burgundy, Loire, Rhone, Alsace and Champagne. Other studies included technical visits to Priory in Spain and the valleys of Napa and Sonoma in the United States.
With time, Felipe got to know Limari Valley (Chile) very closely, and once he tasted the area’s first Chardonnay, he declared the region his love.
In 2006 he joined Tabalí as Chief Winemaker. According to Felipe Müller “Tabalí, though relatively young, has enormous potential, as shown by its outstanding Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Syrah wines”. The winery’s goal is to make the finest wines of the Limari Valley and ultimately become a reference at a national level, by exploring new terroir, new plantations and new selections of clones.
Felipe Müller was named ‘Best Winemaker of the Year’ in the sixteenth version of “Guía de Vinos de Chile 2010”, Chile’s oldest and most prestigious wine industry publication. This distinction was an important recognition for the enthusiasm, passion and dedication he puts in crafting wines. “Wine is my passion and an important part of my life. I feel capable of leveraging the knowledge I’ve built throughout these many years", says Felipe
In the year 2011, Felipe was appointed as Manager Director, keeping his position as Chief Winemaker. From then Felipe was not only responsible for the quality of the wines but also for the global strategy of the company.
In January 2014 Felipe Müller was chosen ‘Best Young Winemaker’ (next to Aurelio Montes who was chosen Best Senior Winemaker)
The 2016 Talinay Chardonnay, from the cooler and limestone-rich slopes of Talinay, fermented in oak barrels and didn't go through malolactic. It was bottled after ten months in barrel. The signature here is mineral austerity, moderate alcohol with very good acidity. This is a super selection from the Talinay vineyard, as the rest is used for the Vetas Blancas. It's elegant, harmonious, balanced and somehow ethereal but with more inner strength than what you may think. The most remarkable feature is the electric and saline palate, the mark of the Talinay place and a constant across all the wines sourced from there. It should develop nicely in bottle, but one day I need to do a vertical of this wine to really see how the older vintages are evolving. 24,000 bottles were filled in September 2016.
There are many changes in the wines of Tabalí, like the new labels Talud, Micas and Tansversal, all talking about soils and soil characteristics. Furthermore, the line previously known as Gran Reserva Especial is known as Vetas Blancas (white streaks or white veins) and Gran Reserva has been renamed to Pedregoso (stony), both talking about the terroir where the grapes are grown. It's the result of the soil-oriented approach taken by the team lead by winemaker Felipe Müller and agronomist Héctor Rojas. They are one of the leading producers in Limarí, but they have also recently added 80 hectares of vineyards in the cooler part of Maipo, where the focus is Cabernet Sauvignon. A name to follow. ~93pts WA
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