The top-of-the-range Pinot Noir 2015 Ocio was produced with some of the oldest vines from the variety in Casablanca, planted approximately in 1985. It was first produced in 2003, when they designed a small winery to produce this wine and the 20 Barrels. 2015 was a dry year and the grapes were healthy; they also got a good crop, some 6,000 kilos per hectare. It was pretty obvious the difference of 2015, as I tasted it next to the other Pinots from 2016, and this is riper but nicely balanced. The parameters of the wine are very healthy—14% alcohol and a pH of 3.3 with 6.7 grams of acidity (measured in tartaric). Most (85%) of the grapes come from Casablanca, but there are also some 15% of grapes from San Antonio. The grapes were hand harvested between March 18th and April 3rd. The bunches were destemmed, but the grapes were not crushed; they were put through a cold soak in open vats, then foot trodden and fermented with neutral yeasts for four to six days at 23 degrees Celsius. Eighty percent of the volume matured in new French oak barrels and the rest in 5,000-liter oak foudres, where the wine was for some 14 months, then it was blended together and put back in stainless steel for a couple more months. It's a powerful and elegant Pinot Noir, serious, generously oaked with the fine-grained but dry and somewhat austere tannins from the granite soils that provide that mineral tactile sensation. This is plain great Pinot Noir. 8,500 bottles were filled in July 2016.
Matías Ríos has taken over winemaking duties from Adolfo Hurtado. He presented me a diverse selection of wines, with a great diversity of varieties. I had always thought of Cono Sur as a kind of Pinot Noir specialist, but as you can see here, I tasted a bit of everything from their very, very wide portfolio. All the whites are bottled without malolactic in an effort to achieve freshness, and the Pinot Noirs are elegant and textured with the influence from the granite soils that make them different from the wines from Burgundy.