Wine is more than a beverage in Chile. It’s love, passion, and if the Viña Montgras My Harvest tour is anything to go by, it’s also very fun. It’s one of the best wine tours in Santa Cruz by far.
I’d taken my mum and the kids to Santa Cruz, where the grape harvest was just kicking off.
If you’re on vacation in Chile between February and April, you simply must give this wine tour a go.
First up: grape picking. After being kitted out in rather fancy aprons, it was off to the fields for harvest time.
Our guide, Marcelo was an encyclopedia of wine knowledge and the best teacher ever.
We learnt not just about different grape varieties, but also their leaves. My favourite has to be Sauvignon Blanc, a.k.a. the spooky face leaf.
Marcelo’s gifts also included answering questions while dodging kids with secateurs.
My kids were so happy. They loved every bit.
After a lot of arguing (‘that was myyyy grape!’) we proudly lugged our heavy buckets back to base.
Then came the squishy bit. Oh the giggles!
My feet have never felt so soft. Apparently there’s something in the grape skin which exfoliates and hydrates.
I wonder if it works when you drink the grapes too?
We all had a go at the grape stomping. Annabelle enjoyed many glasses of Gran Reserva de nappy, Viña sweaty feet.
Santa Cruz wine tour with a difference
Then after a thorough foot wash, it was back to HQ for a tour of the winery and cellars.
Again, ten points to our guide Marcelo for keeping my kids entertained throughout. Marcelo was such a hit I thought Sebastian might never let him go.
Did you know that the date on a bottle of wine is when the grapes were harvested, and this could differ from the date the wine was bottled? I didn’t.
Did you know that the type of oak barrels used in wine production is hugely important? I didn’t. (French oak barrels give subtle, spicy notes, while American oak barrels tend to produce stronger flavours of vanilla and coconut).
I got all of Marcelo’s quiz completely wrong, but I still managed a cheeky sip from the barrel. Hiccup.
The best wine tasting in Santa Cruz?
To round off the morning, we chilled in the courtyard for an aperitivo tasting. Three reds, three whites and a whole lot of sunshine.
While my mum and I drank, the kids ran amok. Wine is much more than a beverage indeed.
The My Harvest experience at Viña Montgras runs from 14 February to 30 April and costs $27,500 for adults and $22,500 for children. To book visit montgras.cl
Due to the hot weather the tour commences at 9.00am, so it’s advisable to stay overnight in Santa Cruz beforehand.