2012 Santa Ema Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Maipo Valley

SKU #1193489 92 points James Suckling

 Precise and bright with blueberries, minerals and violet aromas. Full body plus ultra-fine tannins and a caressing texture. Very, very fine. Drink or hold  (8/2014)

K&L Notes

Based in the Maipo Valley just south of Santiago, Santa Ema has been quietly, reliably producing very good value Cabernet Sauvignon for many years now. However, they clearly have re-doubled their efforts, changing up a bit their winemaking approach and the result is this juicy, purely fruited, elegant, medium bodied Cabernet Sauvignon. At 13.5% ABV, it is incredibly delicious and honest Cabernet Sauvignon, for my money one of the best Cabs in our current inventory. (Joe Manekin, K&L Chilean & Argentinean wine buyer)

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Price: $9.99
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By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/8/2015 | Send Email
Another great value in Cabernet. Red currants, green tobacco, a touch of menthol lift. Good weight and richness on the palate, some pine notes and cedar on back. Serious value.

By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/17/2015 | Send Email
This is impressive juice! Santa Ema, long known for producing a satisfying, slightly toasty, American oak driven style of value Cab, appears to have changed tack. Here we have an elegant Cabernet, with lovely aromas of currants, wild blueberries, both just on the point of ripeness, similar to that piece of fruit that is just ripe enough to have not lost its delicious, bright, tanginess. A fresh, juicy palate shows a surprisingly light touch, with silky tannins and loads of drinkability. 13.5% ABV. What an impressive Cabernet from this venerable producer!

Additional Information:


Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the M├ędoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.


- Located on the western coast of South America and bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Andes to the East, the Chilean wine-growing climate is similar to that of California's Napa Valley and Bordeaux. The Chilean wine industry is known for being consistently free of phylloxera, but political and economic unrest has brought its own source of disorder. The recent establishment of a free market has resuscitated the wine industry, and significant investments have been made, switching the economic focus from domestic production to exports. Chile produces roughly a quarter of the wine Argentina produces, and is known for single-varietal exports, predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. It's a popular region in the U.S. known for inexpensive and tasty wine.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5