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Potel to produce Pinot Noir in Chile

Esteemed Burgundy producer Nicolas Potel will head to Chile to make Pinot Noir in 2010.

The winemaker will produce his first vintage of Chilean Pinot Noir in the up-and-coming Bio Bio region, in a joint venture with Chilean group Vina Corpora (VC).

Potel will produce his first wine at the country’s most southerly winery, Vina Veranda, using grapes from VC’s Miraflores vineyard. The wine is likely to be called Clos Bio Bio.

Potel told decanter.com: ‘Chile is a long country, where we can find some great sites. With Corpora we have decided to find a new spot together.

‘This will take a long time, but they already have the capacity to produce some excellent Pinots from all the new planting they have in Miraflores and Santa Carla.’

Jorge Goles, CEO of VC family estates, said, ‘We will be a minority shareholder in Potel’s venture. Lots of other producers are interested in the region too.

‘We hired a French geologist to study the soils, going to Limari, Choapa, Casablanca and Leyda but we decided Bio Bio was the best. We are also on the same latitude as New Zealand so we are in the right place.’

Nicolas Potel was asked to leave the business he created, Maison Nicolas Potel, in March 2009 by its management team, Cottin Frères. He now runs Domaine De Bellene, formerly known as Domaine Potel.

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Written by Rebecca Gibb in Auckland

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