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Our Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon is made with selected grapes from our Colchagua Valley vineyards grown under our “Dry Farming” philosophy. Under this system we leave nature to do the job of irrigation through rain. We don’t irrigate unless nature does not provide us with the enough minimum rain that we have determined our vines need in which case we irrigate to compensate the difference. Dry Farming increases the final quality of the wines with more ripe fruit, and more weight in the mouth, decreasing the use of water up to 65%.
The vineyards that produce the Cabernet Sauvignon destined for our Montes Alpha are located at our Marchigüe and Apalta estates in the Colchagua Valley. Apalta was the greatest contributor, and both areas have soils of granitic origin with differing levels of weathering. Both vary widely in terms of clay content, depth, and amount of organic matter. Apalta is very heterogeneous, with zones that are marked by the influence of the river and others influenced by mudslides and material that breaks loose from the surrounding mountains. The soils are generally deep on the flatland and thinner at the foot of the mountain and higher areas. The Cabernet Sauvignon does best when planted on the flatlands and lower slopes where the soil is deeper and has moderate moisture retention. Marchigüe is flatter and has lower hills with moderate slopes. Its soils are rather shallow and in some cases no more than 60 cm deep, with medium clay content and a high capacity for water retention. The vineyards are located in the flat zones, which have a high degree of rounded stones (fluvial material) and are poor in clay. Our Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards are planted to a density of 5,555 plants/hectare (2,250 per acre) and managed in a double guyot system for a yield of approximately 7,000 kg/ha (2.8 ton/acre).