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Viña Errázuriz & Viña Seña to host a series of Gala Dinners around the world

Celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Legendary Berlin Tasting

February 13th, 2014

(January 2014).- Last January 23rd marked the 10th Anniversary of the Berlin Tasting, the blind tasting initiative that toured 17 countries and established Chile’s place amongst the world’s greatest wine appellations. Berlin Tastings were carried out in major wine capitals in the world, such as Hong Kong, Dubai, London, New York and Beijing to complete the global picture. Throughout the journey, Chilean wines placed among the top three places in 19 out of the 21 tastings, achieving a remarkable 90% preference rate by key palates from around the world. As Steven Spurrier commented, “It is the consistency across different vintages over a ten-year period that is so important.”

In the words of Jeannie Cho Lee MW: “Over the past ten years and 20 blind tastings later, the message is crystal clear: top Chilean red wines can and should join the ranks of the best wines from around the world.”

In commemoration of this ten-year journey, Viña Errázuriz and Viña Seña are planning a series of Black Tie Gala Dinners around the world in 2014 to celebrate this milestone in the history of Chilean wine. The tour will revisit some of the destinations where the Berlin Tasting took place, beginning in Asia, and continuing on to Europe, and the Americas.
The Gala Dinners will feature older vintages of the Berlin Tasting wines, Don Maximiano, Seña, and Viñedo Chadwick, to showcase their world-class evolution and ageing potential.

About The Berlin Tasting & the Quest for International Recognition

 On the 23rd of January 2004, Europe’s most highly regarded wine journalists, writers, and buyers were invited to gather in Berlin for a blind tasting of 16 wines from the 2000 and 2001 vintages. The tasting included some of the best wines in the world, most of them rated 100 points by wine critic Robert Parker. The outcome placed Chile’s 2000 Viñedo Chadwick and 2001 Seña ahead of legendary world-class wines, thereby establishing the event as a milestone in the history of Chilean wine and a breakthrough for the recognition of Chilean terroirs worldwide.

The first Berlin Tasting constituted a milestone, but it also brought surprise with its results, and even criticism and disbelief. So it was important to repeat it, always blind, never revealing the origins and vintages of the wines tasted, in different places and under different palates. The reason for conducting these blind tastings was to allow the participants an unbiased view of the wines tasted and the opportunity to evaluate their intrinsic quality for themselves.

A new tasting format was launched in 2011, introducing the ‘vertical tasting’ concept to evaluate older vintages of the world’s greatest wines alongside Chilean ones. The goal was to show the ageing potential of these Icon wines and demonstrate how well Chilean fine wines evolve and improve with age. The results were highly favourable, and the audience was appreciative and impressed with the high level of quality and ageability of the top Chilean wines.

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  • I don’t think he was expecting at all to do as well as he did, but I think having done it, it was an educational experience further than he had planned, because instead of just educating the 40 or 50 people in the room, he educated the entire world.

    Steven Spurrier, Consultant Editor to Decanter & Chairman of Decanter World Wine Awards, United Kingdom, October 2013
  • When Eduardo and I first discussed the concept of this blind tasting format, I told him to brace himself for disappointment, especially given the popularity of Bordeaux reds in this part of the world. I was completely wrong in my warning and I am truly surprised by the results…

    Jeannie Cho Lee MW, First Asian Master of Wine, Contributing Editor Decanter Asia, Co-Chair of DAWA, Author, Wine Consultant & Educator, November 2011
  • Until that point only Eduardo knew what he had in his hands. Today the whole world knows… By reaching indisputable recognition in the world wine scene, Eduardo Chadwick’s wines have clearly demonstrated Chile’s tremendous vitivinicultural potential and have helped Chilean wines earn greater space and credibility in the international market.

    Jorge Lucki, Brazilian Wine Journalist and Columnist for Valor Econômico de Sao Paulo, October 2013
  • These tastings definitely have had an impact on how many influential members of the American wine trade view Chile today. So I see them as invaluable to promoting Chile’s well- deserved image as a source for world-class wine that can sit alongside the best that the rest of the world has to offer.

    Josh Raynolds, Wine Critic to Steven Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar, USA, December 2013
  • One enterprising Chilean wine producer, Eduardo Chadwick of Viña Errázuriz, has managed to organise a similar evolutionary milestone for the Chilean wine industry—or at least of his own wines… at what will doubtless come to be known in the history of Chilean wine as the “Berlin Tasting”

    Jancis Robinson MW, “Chilean Wine Grows Up” Financial Times UK, ft Weekend Magazine, February 14, 2004