Where has all the Malbec Gone?

Surveying the changing Malbec landscape.

Spicy, clean and distinctly varietal on the nose with mulberry, rosemary, sage and wild cherry all coming together very nicely. A touch soft in the mouth with a hint of RS, this is fruity, forward and friendly with just enough tannin and acid to keep the wine structured in the mouth, yet not becoming obvious.  the fruit lingers on the modest finish which shows a suggestion of juniper and a hint of bitterness,  layered in with all the spicy red berry fruit and some fuzzy fruit tannins that add a touch of mouthgrab. 84pts
Sweet, spicy if a bit anonymous on the nose with green herbal, fennel seed notes and sweet toasted oak aromas. A bit light and fresh on entry with wild berry fruit and a touch of forest floor that adds a nice attractive contrast to the fruit. Not a big wine, but not smaller either, just medium bodied, fresh, if a bit simple, and very well balanced.  Soft and easy drinking this loses a bit on the finish, with candied blackberry notes and a bit of harshness from the oak coming together briefly. Easy going and pleasant. 84pts
A bit leathery on the nose with hints of dried herbs and some raw, vanilla, nutty oak notes on the nose. A bit raw in the mouth as well with some nice youthful energy and somewhat unformed flavors of plum and cherry that are cloaked in some sweet, vanillin laden and slightly harsh oak notes. Finishing dry, lean, and with wood tannin this is a bit rough going today though I’m not sure the fruit will ever come into harmony with the oak treatment here. 83pts
Young and raw on the nose with lots of crushed berry fruit, blackberries, pomegranate,  and mulberries layered over spicy oak and pungent, oily, rosemary herbal notes. A touch soft on entry, there are firm if small tannins here early on the palate which shows faintly bitter notes of chocolate and medicinal herbs. The fruit is much less obvious that the nose might suggest with oak being a bit assertive today and the wine lacking a bit of stuffing, taking on the  sweetness and weight of the oak on the midpalate before turning dry, as bit thin and firm through the long finish. 82pts

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Mentioned in this article


  • Snooth User: mbew
    169856 6

    It's Niner not Miner Malbec from Paso Robles. Mr S. Pellcheck strikes again.

    Apr 15, 2014 at 7:16 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 203,906

    Thanks for the heads up. It certainly is Niner. Duly corrected.

    Apr 15, 2014 at 7:29 PM

  • Enjoyed this piece. AU Shiraz and Malbec could be (should be) case studies for regional marketing/grower associations. Seem easy lesson not to forget — when prices edge up, and quality en masse goes down (i.e. "the value proposition begins to slip away...") consumers all to happy to look for the next wine from the next region.

    Apr 16, 2014 at 9:17 AM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 203,906

    Thank you for the kind words Frank.

    I agree, there are great lessons to be learned here, particularly short term vs. long term gains and the disconnect between personal gain and enduring regional success. The wine business is a fabulously interesting place at times.

    Apr 16, 2014 at 9:37 AM

  • Snooth User: wyh
    1491076 10

    Where are this sold in Singapore?

    Apr 21, 2014 at 11:04 AM

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