2018 Antigal Uno Malbec
Alright we’ve had a Pinot Noir in the mix already but this is our first dive into those heavier winter reds. Let’s talk about Malbec in general first.
The Malbec grape has its origins in France. However, it has long since proven to be a more successful grape far outside of Europe. Its true home today is Argentina, where it is produced as a single varietal, a blending grape, and a rosé. It has also put Argentina and South America on the wine world map.
Argentina is the leader of the pack, with 75% of all the acres of Malbec planted in the world. In France, Malbec often struggles to ripen and is prone to rotting. However, the vines thrive in Argentina’s hot, high altitude climate. In fact, Malbec is often referred to as the wine of Icarus because of its affinity for high altitudes and sunshine. With Argentina’s warm climate and elevation, the grapes ripen easily, producing high acidy, juicy, long-lasting wines. The grapes success in the vineyards of Argentina, particularly in the Mendoza region, has catapulted Malbec from relative obscurity to international fame. But it’s not just the grape itself that has grown in acclaim. Newfound respect has grown for Argentina as a wine producing nation and helped to put South America in the spotlight.
Malbec, in general, is known for its plump, dark fruit and smoky, sometimes spicy finish. However, regional differences and climate play a huge role in the wine’s flavor profile. In France, the wines tend to showcase tart fruit, leather, savory tannins, black plums, and black pepper. While in Argentina, however, the wines showcase rich, dark fruits like blackberry, plum, and black cherry. You will also find notes of cocoa powder, violets, and tobacco on these wines.
Argentina has 4 major wine regions, the most important of which is Mendoza. 70% of all Argentinian wine is made in Mendoza. But it’s not just Argentina’s largest wine region. With more than 360,000 acres planted with grapes, Mendoza is quite a bit larger than Bordeaux, itself a fairly large region. Australia and New Zealand combined have considerably fewer vines than Mendoza. In fact, the vineyard acreage of this ONE Argentinian region alone is equal to a bit less than half of all the vineyard land in the U.S.
Antigal Winery was established on the site of a historic winery in Maipú, Mendoza - Argentina, whose origin dates back to 1897. For this reason, the winery was named "Antigal"; it is a creole word that means "very old"
Today the winery is headed by winemaker Miriam Gomez.
This 2018 Malbec has a rich nose full of blueberry, mature red fruits, pink peppercorn and a hint of tar. On the palate you will find a slightly tingly feeling from the high acidity with notes of plum, plum skin, tobacco leaves and rose petals. This is a wine made for a meal of rich foods like steak or a hearty, earthy pasta.