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Rapel Valley Wine

Rapel Valley is a large wine-producing region in Chile's Central Valley. Made up of the Colchagua and Cachapoal valleys, the area produces roughly a quarter of all Chilean wine. The warm, dry region makes a wide range of wine styles, ranging from everyday wines to some of Chile's most expensive and prestigious offerings. Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Carmenere are the most important grape varieties planted here.

Rapel Valley runs directly south for 60 miles (100km) from the edges of Maipo Valley to the furthest edge of the Colchagua province. Flanked on both sides by mountain ranges – the Andes and the Coastal Range – Rapel Valley is sheltered from the cold influences of the Pacific Ocean. The region takes its name from the Rapel River, a confluence of the Tinguiririca and the Cachapoal, whose courses divide the valley into two sub-regions, Colchagua Valley in the south and Cachapoal Valley in the north. As is the case in most Chilean wine regions, the river is a vital resource, bringing fresh, mineral-rich meltwater down from the upper Andes.

Rapel Valley's two sub-regions are quite distinct from each other. In Cachapoal Valley, the best vineyards can be found primarily in the east, where the Andean foothills provide a well-drained, sheltered location for viticulture. In contrast, Colchagua Valley's vineyards are concentrated in the west of the valley, where some cooling Pacific Ocean influences give the grapes – and consequently the wines – a more elegant balance of fruit and structured acidity. While Cachapoal is one of Chile's workhorse regions, producing fairly high quantities of good-value wines, those from Colchagua are attracting a lot of international attention.

In recent years, Colchagua Valley and Cachapoal Valley have become better known than their parent, Rapel Valley, as a result of the Chilean wine industry's drive towards commercially attractive regionalisation. Wines not covered by either of these names are often labeled simply 'Valle Central' – a broad-stroke term referring to the entire 560 miles (1000km) between the capital city, Santiago, and Puerto Montt. Additionally, the Colchagua and Cachapoal Valleys are each broken down into independent sub-regions, making the notion of a Rapel Valley wine region less and less relevant.

Unlike many of Chile's wine regions, Rapel Valley does not cover a specific administrative area. Rather, the Cachapoal and Colchagua Valleys are part of the larger O'Higgins region, named after Bernardo O'Higgins, one of Chile's most famous leaders during the War of Independence from Spain in the early 19th Century.

In general terms, Rapel Valley wines are produced primarily from red varieties, but there are some plantings of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Malbec plantings are also on the rise, presumably in an attempt to share the success enjoyed by Mendoza, which lies to the north-west across the Andes in Argentina.

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We found 222 wines produced in this region.
Wine Name
Grape 
Popularity
Concha y Toro Casillero del Diablo Reserva Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $10 623
Santa Rita Reserva Sauvignon Blanc, Casablanca Valley, Chile Sauvignon Blanc $13 1583
Concha y Toro Casillero del Diablo Reserva Merlot, Rapel Valley, Chile Merlot $10 2738
Casa Lapostolle 'Casa' Grand Selection Merlot, Rapel Valley, Chile Merlot $13 4198
Casa Lapostolle 'Casa' Grand Selection Cabernet Sauvignon, Rapel Valley, Chile Cabernet Sauvignon $13 5294
Casa Lapostolle Canto de Apalta, Rapel Valley, Chile Bordeaux Blend - Syrah $20 7986
Santa Carolina Cabernet Sauvignon, Rapel Valley, Chile Cabernet Sauvignon $10 8426
Casa Lapostolle 'Casa' Grand Selection Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $13 8893
Concha y Toro 'Marques de Casa Concha' Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $20 8916
Concha y Toro Trio Reserva Merlot, Rapel Valley, Chile Merlot $13 10082
Concha y Toro Casillero del Diablo Reserva Shiraz, Rapel Valley, Chile Shiraz $10 11393
Casa Lapostolle 'Casa' Grand Selection Sauvignon Blanc, Rapel Valley, Chile Sauvignon Blanc $11 11773
Santa Rita 120 Merlot, Rapel Valley, Chile Merlot $8 12184
Concha y Toro Casillero del Diablo Reserva Malbec, Rapel Valley, Chile Malbec $10 12799
Concha y Toro 'Marques de Casa Concha' Syrah, Rapel Valley, Chile Syrah $18 13081
Santa Rita 120 Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $8 13289
Misiones de Rengo Cabernet Sauvignon, Rapel Valley, Chile Cabernet Sauvignon $8 15820
Anakena Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $8 16628
Santa Rita Gran Hacienda Merlot, Rapel Valley, Chile Merlot $10 17400
Santa Rita Reserva Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $11 17518
Emiliana Walnut Crest Cabernet Sauvignon, Rapel Valley, Chile Cabernet Sauvignon $5 20831
Santa Rita Gran Hacienda Carmenere, Rapel Valley, Chile Carmenere $11 22314
Anakena Ona Special Reserve Red, Rapel Valley, Chile N/A $16 24293
Santa Carolina Herencia Carmenere, Peumo, Chile Carmenere $156 24764
Los Rosales Chapel Vineyard Reserva Merlot, Rapel Valley, Chile Merlot $15 25079
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