Malbec World Day!

More than a few reasons to celebrate the success of Argentina’s famous grape

 


In case you missed out on our most recent Virtual Tasting, we enjoyed a stellar lineup of Malbec-based wines with Nora Favelukes, the U.S. representative of the Wines of Argentina. Just in time for Malbec World Day, April 17th, take advantage of all the information contained in these video shorts, and get yourself ready to celebrate in educated style!
 
We had a spirited conversation with Nora, touching on everything from the unique weather and soils of Argentina, both key players in the quality of Argentine wine, to food pairings and even the dining habits most common in Argentina. It was a fascinating and free spirited discussion touching on all things Argentine, including Torrontes and Bonarda, but inevitably focusing on the wine that made Argentina famous: Malbec.
 
And what better way to celebrate Malbec World Day this year than with a bottle of Argentine wine? Here's a little tidbit of vinous trivia to get you in the spirited mood: do you know why we celebrate Malbec World Day on April 17th? To commemorate the establishment of Argentina's modern wine industry. In 1853, Argentine president Domingo Faustino Sarmiento enlisted a French soil expert by the name of Michel Aime Pouget to import new vines to Argentina. Among them were Malbec cuttings, and the rest, as they say, was history. 

Trivento Malbec Reserva

We kick off our discussion with the 2012 Trivento Malbec Reserva from Mendoza. There are actually five different sub-regions that make up Mendoza, including the renowned Lujan de Cuyo region, Argentina's first DOC. Today the region is recognized as one of Argentina's finest, with producers from around the globe coming to produce wines from this unique corner of the world. Find out more about today's expansion of the Argentine wine industry, and those who were its original pioneers.

What to Expect

Here’s what you can expect from Malbec in Argentina, from those that are value-priced right on up the scale to the richest, grandest expression of the grape. There are differences and distinctions between the appellations, which are being recognized today as vintners learn the nuances of the regions, and how they can be blended to produce a more complete example of Malbec.

Finca Flichman

Without any significant coastline, and virtually no mitigating effects of coastal currents, Argentina is an anomaly in the world of fine wine production. How do they do it? Through a blend of natural features, the fine soils and unique climate, as well as modern winemaking techniques. Taste along with us as we experience the 2009 Finca Flichman Dedicado. We get into our first discussion of pairing food with these impressive wines!

Terrazas de los Andes

The establishment of the Argentine wine industry may have begun well over 100 years ago, but the flourishing modern industry as we know it is just a few decades old. Nonetheless, there are world class wines being produced all over Argentina. Today the industry is looking to discover and share the finest expressions of single-vineyard Malbec. A fine example is the 2010 Terrazas de los Andes Las Compuertas, a single vineyard planted in 1929! With treasures like these old vines, and the continuing improvements made by producers, the future is very bright for these unique examples of malbec. 

 

Challenges

Argentina is a big country, with some unique issues, and benefits driving the development of the wine industry. Nora shares some of the trials and tribulations facing Argentine producers as they push the envelope, reviving ancient vineyards, and expanding into corners of the country where no one previously thought of making wine. While farming organically is not a challenge in Argentina, challenges do remain, chief among them giant hailstones!

Michel Torino

Michel Torino is one of the top producers in Argentina, producing wine in Salta, in the north of the country, proving that world class wine is not limited to the Mendoza region. The 2010 Michel Torino Altimvs is produced by one of the region’s most historic wineries, well known for their Torrentes. This blend of Malbec, Cabernet and Tannat shows the finesse of high altitude vineyards, and sets itself apart from many Argentine Malbecs with its blend of power and elegance. These wines are not inexpensive, though they do offer great value (we discuss the factors that come into determining value and costs for wines). 

Wrap up

We wrap up our conversation with Nora by touching on the burgeoning Enotourism scene in Argentina. All the wines we tasted during this Virtual Tasting were trophy winners in the last Argentina Wine Awards, the highest honor awarded, and we end our talk touching on the importance of this annual event. 

Slideshow View

Virtual Tasting Argentine Malbecs

1.
Trivento Malbec Reserva (2012)
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2.
Finca Flichman Dedicado (2009)
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3.
Terrazas de Los Andes Single Vineyard las Compuertas Malbec (2010)
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4.
Michel Torino Altimus (2010)
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Mentioned in this article

Comments

  • Snooth User: EMark
    Hand of Snooth
    847804 7,190

    Very interesting. While I like the idea of breaking up the VT into little clips, it left me wanting to see/hear the whole thing. I'm really sorry that I missed this.

    Apr 16, 2013 at 6:47 PM


  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 222,082

    Here you go! Always happy to oblige!

    http://www.snooth.com/virtual-tasti...

    Apr 16, 2013 at 9:05 PM


  • Snooth User: L33mimi
    1273414 16

    this is great. Snooth should definitely do this more often!

    Apr 17, 2013 at 2:47 AM


  • Snooth User: EMark
    Hand of Snooth
    847804 7,190

    Excellent. I enjoyed it very much. Thank you.

    Apr 17, 2013 at 7:46 PM


  • Snooth User: info168
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    193493 44

    Dear Mr. Dal Piaz, could we send you a bottle of our indigenous variety (Xinisteri) for you to try and give us your opinion?

    Apr 21, 2013 at 3:20 PM


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