Cono Sur is one of the larger producers in Chile and they have done a lot in their first two decades which started in 1993. In many ways they may seem like an overnight success but it took the commitment and vision of the founders. Cono Sur is owned by another very large Chilean winery whose name should be instantly recognizable to most wine lovers. The name Cono Sur is a reference to the shape of the South American sub continent and the growth of this brand has been linked to the growth of the Chilean wine industry. Since 1993 quality has improved many times over, exports have increased and Cono Sur has been there every step of the way pioneering new areas and new ideas.
Cono Sur has a lot of different wines, and it is sometimes difficult for the consumer to keep track of everything they produce. Adoldo Hurtado heads up the winemaking team, and they need a team to cover all of the varietals and regions. Each part of the team remains focused to their role and the overall level of quality is high. At the very entry level there is the Bicycle label, which is a tribute to the vineyard workers who use the bicycle as a primary mode of transport and also to the wineries commitment to the environment. Cono Sur made a strong commitment to Pinot Noir in 1999 and we are constantly surprised at the quality of this entry level Pinot. The next label up is the Organic label, made from entirely organically grown grapes and is only a small step up in price from the Bicycle label. The 20 Barrels label was started in 1996 when they put aside the best 20 Barrels from that year’s harvest. It is an expression of the terroir and commitment to excellence in everything they do.
During their first two decades their achievements have started to add up. They have extensive vineyard holdings, are one of the top five producers in Chile in terms of exports, and they have made a serious commitment to the environment by achieving carbon neutral delivery status for neutralizing their CO2 emissions for their product shipments. They have pioneered the Bio-Bio Valley and produced the first Viognier from Chile. They are also the largest producer of Pinot Noir from Chile.