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.
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.
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.