More stock arriving before Christmas!
Le Dix de Los Vascos is the top Chilean red wine blend from Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite). Le Dix, of course, means “10” in French and the first vintage of Le Dix de Los Vascos was released in 1996 to celebrate their first 10 years in Chile, although it was not until 1988 when they fully took over Vina Los Vascos in 1988. The wine is only released in good vintages, there was no Le Dix released in 1998 or in 2005, for example.
In 1988 the Los Vascos estate (meaning “The Basque”, in honour of its Basque origins) extended to some 2,200 hectares, of which 220 hectares were under vine. The new Los Vascos project included major investment under the direction of the Technical Director at Château Lafite Rothschild from 1983 to 1994. The vineyard was restructured, a replanting programme was put in place and yields were reduced. Drilling provided a plentiful source of water and a weather monitoring station was installed in the vineyards. The bodega itself was enlarged and modernised step by step to cope with the new requirements in winemaking and ageing.
The grapes for Le Dix de Los Vascos primarily come from an exceptional 70 year old vineyard known as the “El Fraile”, which means “The Monk”. It is planted with 100% Cabernet Sauvignon and is quite large at 200 acres, however, due to the age of the vines, careful vineyard management and very particular cuvee selection the yields are kept very low. The grapes are all hand-picked and sorted by hand at sorting tables. They are then fermented in stainless steel at 30c with pumping over to extract the best flavours, aromatic and colour from the grapes. This was followed by a long maceration for 20 to 25 days followed by malolactic fermentation in stainless steel tanks. Finally, after a careful selection, the wines good enough to become Le Dix are aged for 18 months in new French oak barrels from Lafite’s own cooperage in Bordeaux.
The Le Dix blend for 2014 is 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Carmenere and 5% Syrah.