Roberto Henriquez Tierra de Pumas 2019
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
País vines embody the culture, history, tradition and character of the Chilean terroir, and they are a driving force for the journey into winemaking for Roberto Henríquez.
Roberto Henríquez studied agronomy and enology at the University of Concepción. From there, he travelled and worked with winemakers in Canada, South Africa and finally in the Loire Valley with Rene Mosse. Rene had a profound effect on Roberto’s perspective on winemaking and his progression into organic and biodynamic farming.
Roberto, originally from Concepción, returned home after his time in abroad to begin making his own wine. Returning to the traditional Pipeño methods of the original winemakers of Chile felt intuitive to the winemaking style he had adopted. The rest of his story to present is pure progression to the pursuit of the purest wines in a true Chilean context.
His vineyards were personally and carefully selected. Working with long term fermage agreements, he farms all the land himself (with the help of farming animals). To the north, in Itata, he is working with a vineyard of old vine Semillon and blends that with Corinto (aka Chasselas) and Muscat d’Alejandria producing an orange style wine. A little further south, in Bío Bío, he is farming Pais, from which he makes the Pipeño and the Santa Cruz de Coya. He works with carbonic macerations and ages in old Rauli wood barrels. His wines are light-bodied, translucent, refined, and full of character.
A cool, rather wet region of southern Chile, Bio Bio is experiencing an increase in the development of quality wine production.
Planted as the first vitis vinifera wine grape in the U.S., País has a long significant history in the Americas. Originally from Spain, where the grape is known as Listán Prieto, it was brought by Spanish colonists to Mexico in 1540 and, later, during the late 1700s, to Mission San Diego in California where it would take on another new name, Mission. Propagated for its use as a sacramental wine, Mission remained important in California until the spread of phylloxera in the 1880s. Somm Secret—In Chile it is called Pais. In Argentina, Pais is known as Criolla Chica.