Costa Rica

La Casa de La Garita Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot, Vicosa Winery

Costa Rica has been producing wine on a small scale in the Central Valley area of the country for about ten years. In fact, the Costa Rican government sponsored an experimental effort at wine production, but eventually most of the related vines were ripped out. Costa Rican grape wine production was estimated to be about 1,130 hectoliters, worth some US$ 527,000, for the year 2003. My perception is that production has subsequently fallen.

The Costa Rican wine that I have, produced about 30km out of San Jose at La Garita in Alajuela Province, is a NV La Casa de La Garita Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot. The wine, although labeled seco (dry) is, in fact, fairly sweet, with intense fruit and a “not a good wine, but drinkable” effect on the palate. The Vicosa winery which produces Casa de La Garita brand is small and unpretentious. The winery also produces rose and white wines, under the brands “Casa de La Garita” and “Teber”.

There is apparently a winery in Escazu, also near San Jose. As well, a Costa Rican wine called Monasterio has received some favorable comment. All Costa Rican wines seem to be quite sweet, in line with what is considered to best fit the tastes of Costa Rica’s middle class population.

The pictures below are from the Vicosa Winery, December 2009.

The La Casa de La Garita Winery
Inside the Winery

Robert would appreciate any information on wine production in countries and autonomous regions not listed. You may contact Robert here.