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Tapiz Black Tears Malbec 2014
This handsome Malbec is rich and smooth with ample cassis, dark plum and blackberry notes as well as hints of vanilla, coconut and bitter chocolate. On the palate there’s a generous full body, ripe tannins and long finish with notes of dried fruit and baking spice. The well-rounded and juicy flavour profile makes this a great match for roast beef, barbecued meats, or a prime steak.
Tapiz is one of Argentina’s leading wineries thanks to their deep commitment to research and development in partnership with local bodies like the University of Cuyo. This work helps them to produce truly exceptional wines which capture the typicity of each variety and terroir.
Their Black Tears Malbec is crafted at Finca San Pablo in Mendoza’s Uco Valley which has dramatic views of the magnificent Andes Mountains. The vines here sit at an altitude of 1400 metres, helping to preserve freshness in the grapes as well as delicate aromatic complexity. In the winery the young wine is aged in new French oak barrels for 24 months to add extra polish and harmony, followed by another 12 months of ageing in the bottle before release.
Riglos Gran Malbec 2014
Riglos was founded by friends Darío Werthein and Fabián Suffernwho chose to name their new winery after the place where their ancestors arrived in Argentina many years before. The wines are made with fruit from Finca Las Divas which sits at 4265 feet or 1350 metres above sea level in Gualtallary in Mendoza’s acclaimed Uco Valley. This lofty setting is superb for making top quality wines thanks to the sunny summer days and cooling effect of the altitude which creates richly concentrated wines while retaining freshness and balance.
The vines used for this Gran Malbec are planted on alluvial soils which drain very well. The Malbec grapes are carefully sorted and vinified using wild yeasts. The young wine then ages in French oak barrels and larger casks for 18 months. Bottling is carried out without fining or filtering to preserve the typicity and character of the grape variety and terroir.
On the nose there are intense hints of cassis, blackberry and dried fruit while the palate offers a well-defined structure, statuesque full body and firm tannins. This is an excellent red wine to serve with steak, roast beef or rich meat stews, although it can also be aged for another decade or so in the cellar if desired.
Edmond de Rothschild Flechas De Los Andes Gran Malbec 2017
Flechas De Los Andes was born in 2003 out of a collaboration between Baron Benjamin de Rothschild and Laurent Dassault who joined together to found a top winery in the foothills of the mighty Andes mountains. The winery is named after the five arrows or “flechas” in Spanish that are the symbol of the five brothers of the Rothschild family who are known for founding some of the world’s most prestigious wineries in France and beyond.
The winery is located in Mendoza where the high altitude vineyards and sunny summer days are ideal for premium winemaking. Well-draining sandy and gravel soils combined with the cooling breezes from the Andes and higher elevation ensures that the grapes reach maximum ripeness while retaining plenty of freshness and aromatic complexity.
This sumptuous Malbec is made from top quality grapes which are harvested by hand and vinified in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks. The young wine is then aged in a combination of tanks and oak barrels for 12 months to add complexity while preserving the pure varietal character. The result is a rich full bodied wine with plenty of luscious dark berry character, smooth tannins and a long finish.
Catena Zapata Nicasia Vineyard Malbec 2014
The Catenas are easily Argentina’s most famous winemaking family thanks to their key role in establishing the country’s reputation for quality winemaking. The family have been making wine in Argentina for four generations, and Nicolas Catena is especially respected as the maker of the first premium Malbec wine to be exported around the world in 1994.
Along with his daughter, Laura, Nicolas has spent years studying Mendoza’s unique high altitude vineyards and learning how to make top quality wine in the foothills of the Andes Mountains. This iconic wine is a single vineyard Malbec from the legendary Nicasia site which was planted in 1996 at 1095 metres above sea level. The grapes are fermented in open barriques and stainless steel tanks and then aged for 24 months in French oak barrels. The wine is then aged for an additional 24 months in the bottle before release.
Cassis, crushed blackberries and plums characterise the nose while the first sip reveals multiple layers of flavours moving from ripe dark berries and cherries to cigar box spice, leather and dark chocolate. The ripe, refined tannins and smooth texture make this a very approachable wine now, although it will continue to develop and evolve in the cellar over the next decade or so.
Pulenta Malbec 2017
Owned by brothers Hugo and Eduardo Pulenta, the Pulenta estate boasts 135 hectares of prime vines in Mendoza’s Alto Agrelo sub-region. Conditions here are ideal for producing top quality Malbec wines, Argentina’s signature variety, thanks to the 980 metres of altitude and proximity to the Andes Mountains whose melted snow provides irrigation for the vines. The fruit enjoys a long growing season thanks to the hot summers and significant difference between daytime and nighttime temperatures which helps preserve freshness and aromatics in the grapes.
This classic Malbec is crafted from fruit from a vineyard in Alto Agrelo as well as one in the higher altitude Uco Valley. Once in the winery the grapes are vinified and then matured in French oak barrels for 12 months. The wine then undergoes a further 12 months of ageing in the bottle before it is deemed ready for release.
Vibrant dark plum, blackberry and cassis with hints of cigar box spice define the nose while the first sip reveals a generous full body, well-rounded tannins and silky smooth texture that is characteristic of Malbec. The bold flavour profile makes it a great match for typical Argentinian fare including prime cuts of beef, smoky barbecued meats or fresh pasta served with a hearty ragu sauce.
Michel Rolland Mariflor Malbec 2015
Renowned for his work as a “flying winemaker” consulting with top wineries across the world, Michel Rolland also owns three estates in Argentina. Rolland’s love affair with the land of tango began in the late 1980s when he was invited to meet with the Etcharts whose family winery was located in northern Argentina. It wasn’t long before Rolland also founded a winery in Mendoza where his classic Mariflor Malbecs are now made.
Grapes for the Mariflor Malbec are sourced from the highest estate vineyards on the Clos de los Siete property in Vista Flores which sit at 1100 metres above sea level. Conditions here are ideal for making robust and rich red wines thanks to the plentiful sunshine and large temperature difference between the day and night. This helps the grapes to ripen fully while preserving freshness and aromatics in the wine.
The grapes are carefully harvested by hand in small boxes in the early morning and then sorted on arrival at the winery to maintain quality. They are then fermented in concrete tanks and the young wine ages in French oak barrels for 15 months before bottling. The result is an exuberant, fruit-forward Malbec that’s bursting with ripe cassis, plum and blackberry along with hints of cigar box spice, vanilla and dried violets.