updated 6/16/2011 7:15:45 AM ET 2011-06-16T11:15:45

NEW YORK, June 15, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Wines of Chile welcomed over 100 representatives from top Chilean wineries to their 2011 Grand Tasting at New York's Metropolitan Pavilion yesterday, June 14.With more than 60 premium Chilean wineries showcasing over 300 wines, visitors discovered the superb quality and the immense diversity that Chile has to offer. Over 650 guests attended the event, including members of the trade, local and national media and over 250 consumers. Tickets were sold to the general public for the evening portion of the tasting, with part of the proceeds benefiting The Surfrider Foundation.

An event highly anticipated each year by wine enthusiasts, this time was no exception with attendees invited to explore four themed lounges that took on the personality of a particular pairing: Carmenere and Curry; Sauvignon Blanc and Ceviche; Cabernet Sauvignon and Carne; and the organic and sustainable Green Room. The lounges allowed guests to sample foods appropriately paired with selected wines, showcasing the diverse range and compatibility of Chilean wine. Each room also featured a number of images by the English photographer Matt Wilson, who lives in the heart of Chile's Colchagua Valley.

"We were very excited about the additions made to this year's tasting," says Lori Tieszen, Executive Director of Wines of Chile USA. "The themed lounges helped to showcase the range of high quality wines coming out of Chile while the vast number of wineries in attendance allowed guests to experience the diversity from the country firsthand."

Attendees tasted some of Chile's finest wines from more than 60 of the country's top wineries – all stunning examples of the new heights the country is reaching in terroir, viticulture and winemaking. Each guest was given a personal tasting book, which included space for notes as well as importer and distributor information. The event also featured a "Facebook Cellar" where guests posed in front of a cellar room backdrop for instantaneous upload to Facebook using Reflectr technology. Photos from the event and from the "Facebook Cellar" will be posted on the Wines of Chile Facebook page this week.

Additionally, Wines of Chile hosted two dynamic seminars this year: "Wine Marketing in the Digital World" moderated by Snooth Editor-in-Chief Gregory Dal Piaz (@Snooth) and hosted by a VIP panel of industry experts including Lindsey Johnson from Lush Life (@livethelushlife), Jody Rones from Thrillist (@jodyrones) and Joe Roberts of One Wine Dude (@1WineDude); and "Chile's Best Kept Secrets" with Fred Dexheimer, MS, which introduced attendees to the lesser known regions and wines.

For more information on the event or on Wines of Chile, please visit www.winesofchile.org , or our Facebook and Twitter pages at http://www.facebook.com/WinesOfChile and http://twitter.com/DrinkChile.

About Wines of Chile

Wines of Chile is an organization committed to promoting the quality and image of Chilean wine throughout the world. It has offices in Santiago, London, and New York, as well as representatives in Canada, Ireland, and Denmark. WOC also works closely with ProChile to develop and offer promotional and educational programs in Asia, Latin America and Europe. Wines of Chile's 93 member wineries belong to Vinos de Chile and represent 93% of Chile's bottled wine exports.

About Surfrider Foundation

The Surfrider Foundation is a grass roots organization whose mission is the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network. They don't want to put a velvet rope around a beach and tell people to keep off. They are surfers, they are beach goers, they are watermen. . .they enjoy the coasts. They are moms, surfers, kids and teens...they are you. The Surfrider Foundation is local in many coastal regions; to find one near you, visit http://www.surfrider.org.

CONTACT: The Thomas Collective

Amber Gallaty ( agallaty@ttc-pr.com )

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