Last week I had the chance to taste the first lot of old-vine Carignans from Maule in Chile being launched under the name, and relatively strict appellation-like regulations, of Vigno.

Maule, as you may know, is the somewhat forgotten wine region in southern Chile which has in general much older vines than other wine regions, even if many of them are of the old low-quality Pais variety. But under the Vigno rules, the so-called Vignadores de Carignan produce wines which must be aged at least 24 months (which may be a bit long), from dry-farmed bushvines and the blend must contain at least 65% Carignan. All the vines must be at least 30 years old, according to the rules – although I see they allow new, more fashionable varieties to be top grafted on to old rootstocks.
You can read the background to this initiative, written by the 2010 Geoffrey Roberts Award winner Derek Mosmann Knapp, in Vignadores de Carignan and in Maule – slow recuperation. I will also be writing about this exciting new Chilean range on Saturday.
The wines are slowly making their way into commercial circulation, with Knapp’s own Garage Wines available chez Bibendum in the UK. From Saturday, Naked Wines will be offering a six pack of three bottles apiece of the Bravado and Gillmore wines described below at £98.76 including delivery – in May.
These wines are very different from the Chilean norm and are a fine, worthy supplement to the sophisticated international varietals that constitute the majority of what Chile has to offer us. They are obviously the product of the earth and not inconsiderable warmth – none is less than 14%. But they offer a great addition to the world’s range of old-vine Carignans.
Tasting notes are listed below in alphabetical order by producer name.

-Jancis Robinson