Most visitors to Chile feel they need to venture far away from the capital to the Valle del Maule, Valle de Casablanca, or Valle de Colchagua, but there are several significant wineries, including two of the biggest names in Chilean wine, within easy access of Santiago.
Viña Concha y Toro
Renown throughout the world and one of Chile’s most important labels for exportation, the large grounds of Concha y Toro are located in Pirque south of Santiago. The tour takes you inside the former family mansion, across the vineyards, and into the cellars. Tastings of several wines and demonstrations are had and your wine glass can be taken home with you. The highlight of the trip for many is a walk into the actual Casillero del Diablo, or the Devil’s Cellar.
One of Concha Y Toro’s best selling labels, Casillero del Diablo was actually a joke used by the owners to scare away workers who kept digging into the stash of wine in the cellar. Once they thought it was haunted, the problem apparently went away. After the tour visitors are taken to a beautiful café on the grounds where more tastings, tapas, and bottles are available for purchase. Extremely popular with foreign travelers, tours to the vineyard should be arranged a day in advance or more by filling out a form on their website or by calling 476-5669. Tours are held Monday through Friday at 11:30am and 3pm; Saturday at 10am and noon. Many tour companies also arrange daytrips from Santiago.
Viña Cousiño Macul
Even closer is Viña Cousiño Macul located in nearby Peñalolén just southeast of the center, one of the few wineries in the country that still operates in the hands of the original family. Forty-five minute tours take you in their stunning cellar, built six meters underground by French architects in 1872, and gives visitors inside looks at their wine making process. One reserve and one varietal wine is tasted. Tours are Monday through Friday at 11am and 3pm; Saturday at 11am. Write to their website or call 351-4175 for reservations.
Viña de Martino
Viña de Martino is not nearly the classic Chilean wine experience as the other two wineries mentioned. It’s more contemporary and more similar to what you will find in Chile’s other wine routes. Set on 400 hectares of land between the Andes and the Pacific, an hour southwest of the center, the vineyard is very tourist friendly and can arrange numerous tours including those with lunch in the vineyard. Tours, available in English and Spanish are held at varying times from Monday through Saturday, can be made by calling 819-2062, or by visiting their website.
Avid traveler, journalist and writer, he moved away from his native France back in 2006 and settled in Chile. After visiting the country North to South, learning extensively about its culture, History, gastronomy, Thomas started to work as a tour guide. He liked it so much that he ended up creating his own tour agency in Valparaiso, where he lives today. You can visit my site at: https://chileprivatetours.com/