Chile has a long history of wine production dating back to the 16th century, when Spanish conquistadors began planting vines. Chile has also so far escaped the vine disease which had devastated European vineyards in the late 19th century and California.
The majority of Chilean vineyards are in the central part of the country and unlike most other countries, the vines have not been grafted, so remain pure.
Chile is famous for its fruity, oaked Chardonnay’s and robust, juicy Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Other key varietals are Carmènere, similar to Merlot and the indigenous Pais.