Malbec

“to do everything with passion” – 2007 Tamari Reserva Malbec

Huarpe is the language of the indigenous people of the Mendoza region of Argentina and in the Huarpe language, Tamari means “to do everything with passion”. The 2007 Tamari Reserva Malbec produced by Sebastian Ruiz shows his passion for the land and his belief that the more you respect the land, the better fruit it will produce.

Comprised of 95% Malbec, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Bonarda the 2007 Reserva comes from vineyards in the Uco Valley of the Mendoza region. (see map) The vineyards are located on hillsides with predominately stony soil allowing for proper drainage. The climate is well balanced between warm daytime temperatures and cool nighttime temperatures all together combining to bring out the finest qualities of the Malbec varietal.

argentinawinemap

Harvested in April, the wine saw 12 days of post fermentation maceration prior to oak aging. 70% of the wine was aged in a combination French and American 1st, 2nd and 3rd use barrels while the remaining 30% was aged in stainless steel. Keeping the 30% of the Malbec in neutral vessels helped to maintain the Malbec’s fruity nature before being blended back into the finished wine.

tmrres-nv_bottle_150dpiMy Tasting Notes –

Nose – blackberry, oak, celery, black peppercorns and smoke

Taste – raspberry, eucalyptus, coffee and black cherry

Mouthfeel – smooth with dusty tannins and lots of acidity

Finish – dry, medium to long in length and dark fruit and black pepper flavors

My first impression after I popped and poured this wine was that it was very one dimensional, mostly blackberry and that was about it. After a half hour of being opened and then on to an hour this wine really started to show its form. The slightly vegetal notes, more of the oak and the black pepper (which was very evident) and the lush dark fruit made for a great sip. Mouthfeel was smooth and firm and a hugely acidic backbone, one of the calling cards of the Malbec grape.

Besides its great varietal expression, it as also a great value at between $12 and $16. Being a 2007, it is still young which is probably why it took a bit of time to open up, so if you pick it up now, hold on to it for a bit or decant it before you drink it.

Cheers!

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Categories: $10-$20, Malbec, wine review | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Wine Tasting – 2004 Pascual Toso Reserve Single Estate Malbec

I received this wine for my birthday back in May from my buddy Mike and his fiancée Bobbi. Mike and Bobbi are huge Malbec fans, so I knew this had to be a winner.

A bit of background on the wine –

2004 was a good year for Malbec in Argentina, and rated up there with 2002 and 2003 that were considered excellent vintages for the region. 2004 saw fantastic weather for the majority of the season, although there was some late season rain, the crop was harvested under favorable conditions.

This wine was made from 100% Malbec grapes that are harvested by hand from vineyards in Las Barrancas, Maipu, Mendoza. After fermentation the 100% of this Reserve Malbec is aged in French Oak barrels for 12 months compared to only 30% of the non-reserve which is aged only 10 months. After barrel maturation, it is allowed to age in the bottle for an additional 6 months prior to release.

My Tasting Notes –

Nose – Blackberry, Swisher Sweet cigar, roasting coffee and candle wax

Taste – Blackberry jam, tobacco, black cherry towards the finish

Mouthfeel – Medium to Full body, very smooth

Finish – Nice and long with a lot of cherry flavors, good grip and slightly spicy

This is an excellent wine and a great value, especially if you get it for free, or if you pay for it. I think it retails for around $13.00.  This Malbec had a nice complex nose, with jammy dark fruit flavors and a long gripping finish.  Give it a try, I think it is pretty well distributed – about 4000 cases are made of the Reserve

Categories: Malbec, wine, wine review | Leave a comment