Rapel Valley
Rapel Valley is a large production zone within Chile's Central Valley, located appropriately enough in the center of the country. Rapel contains two very important valleys: Cachapoal and Colchagua. For years, there were many many wines exported from Chile that had a Rapel Valley origin; these wines, white and red, were value-oriented, made in an approachable style with modest tannins for the reds and little or no oak for the whites. For many consumers, these wines were their first introduction to Chile's wines, many of them from some of the country's best known estates. Today, while Cachapoal and Colchagua have become better known and more highly regarded, Rapel Valley is not seen on wine labels as in the past, but it is still a reliable name for honest, well made Chilean wines with very good varietal character. Production is primarily red - especially Cabernet Sauvignon - but Sauvignon Blanc is also a leading variety. (Wine/Appellations)