Montes Alpha Purple Angel 2012


The Super Carmenère of Montes

This superb wine represents a whole new dimension for Carmenère, the long-lost grape variety that recently resurfaced in Chile after being presumed extinct in Bordeaux, its original home. In Chile, we consider it our ‘signature’ variety and call it the ‘Jurassic Park’ grape that returned from the past.

Montes were pioneers on the Chilean wine scene when we created our super-premium wines: the Montes Alpha range, and icons Montes Alpha M and Montes Folly. Montes also led the way to quality by planting vineyards on steep hillsides. But we also know when to wait.

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Montes Alpha Purple Angel 2012

WS 93 points, JS 95 points(2012), Rated Best Chilean Red Based Carmenere by James Suckling (2011)

92% Carmenere & 8% Petit Verdot

Intense carmine red in color with tremendous aromatic potency. Complex and bursting with character. Ripe red and black fruits such as plums, blackberries, strawberries, and cherries predominate on the nose, complemented by aromas of pastries and nutmeg with a touch of cinnamon and jam. The contribution of French oak is distinguished by a delicate aroma of caffe latte, toffee, and caramel followed by notes of toast from the first-use oak. The palate is nicely balanced with very well-rounded tannins and an outstanding central nerve from the Petit Verdot. This is a creamy wine with a sensation of flavors that echo its aromas and lead to a long and seductive finish.

Harvest Report:

The weather during the 2011–2012 growing period presented very well-defined seasons. Rainfall was concentrated during the winter months, and the spring was frost free, which was perfect for optimal foliage growth and bunch definition. The summer was dry and did not have the cold days of the previous season, making it ideal for ripening the bunches. An unusual heavy rainfall in December did not affect the quality of the fruit, although it did set veraison back slightly. The rest of the summer was rain-free, although temperatures were unusually high, with maximum temperatures in February and March that accelerated the onset of harvest for the earlier varieties. The grapes reached the cellar in very healthy condition with normal-weight bunches, small berries, and with a wealth of anthocyanins and ripe tannins that are ideal for our Carmenere.


The grapes destined for our Purple Angel come from vineyards in Marchigüe and Apalta in the Colchagua Valley. The soils are of granitic origin with variations in terms of clay content, organic matter, depth, and especially in the types of rock found, which are of fluvial or glacial origin, which provides an idea of the diversity of soils in our vineyards. Apalta’s soils are very heterogeneous, with zones that are highly influenced by the Tinguiririca River and others influenced by floods and the detachment of material from high in the mountains that delineate the valley. The soils are generally deep in the lowlands and shallower at the foot of the mountains and higher areas. In the case of the Carmenere, the vineyards are preferably located in the flat zones, where the soil is deeper and has moderate moisture retention. Marchigüe has flatter areas and low-to-moderate hills. The soils are shallow, and in some cases no more than 60 mm (24 in), with medium clay content and a high capacity for water retention. The vineyards are located in the flat areas. The vineyards are located in the zones with lower slopes, planted at a density of 5,555 plants/hectare (2,250 plants/ acre), and managed in a double guyot system with the aim of producing yields of approximately 3.5–4.0 tons/hectare (1.4–1.6 tons/acre). The leaves closest to the bunches are severely pulled in early January to fully expose the grapes for even ripening and, more importantly, to reduce the amount of pyrazines that are characteristic of the variety.


Denomination of Origin: Marchigüe, Colchagua Valley

Clone Selection: Clones developed by the Catholic University of Chile

Oak Aging: 100% of the components of this wine were aged for 24 months in new French oak barrels.

Filtering: Average filtration through micropore filters.

Vineyard Yield: 3.5-4.0 tons per hectare (about 1,4 – 1,6 tons per acre).

Grape Varieties: Carmenere 92% – Petit Verdot 8%


Aging Recommendations: Store in a cool, dry, dark place at no more than 15º C.

Recommended Serving Temperature: 17º–19º C / 63º–66º F

Decanting: At least 1 hour


Alcohol 14,5 %

Total Acidity (H2SO4) 3,72 g/lt.

Residual Sugar 2,55 g/lt. pH 3,49 g/lt.

Volatile Acidity (C2H4O2) 0,60 g/lt.

Free SO2 0,023 g/lt.