Malbec, and more specifically, malbec from Mendoza is fast becoming my “go to” value wine. I dare say that if my random selection of wines off a shelf is representative of overall quality and prices, they would keep a few local wineries awake at night. Aromatics of game meats and blackcurrant. The palate has medium length, acid and fine grained tannins, with the flavours also reminding of game and blackcurrants. Enjoyable. Good
This Torrontes from Mendoza in Argentina has muscat à petits grains style aromatics that are pronounced. Yet the palate is bone dry and crisp, reminding of a Muscat de Beaumes de Venise without the residual sugar. Certainly of interest for $12. Acceptable
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So, do you get a good malbec for $10 a bottle? Given that the price of wine is made up of around 50% tax in Australia, in substance we are talking here about a $5 wine in Argentina. The aroma is quite attractive: jammy fruit, spice and maybe a touch of earth. The palate though is a bit hollow around the edges, with a touch of spice. 79 points.
Would I buy it having tasted it? No
This wine is a blend of 60% cabernet sauvignon, 25% malbec and 15% cabernet franc. It revealed an aroma of pepper, spices and plums and around 5 seconds of length on the palate. The wine is really quite good; you can see the potential though that it could be, perhaps with the right vintage or circumstances, very good indeed. 83 to 84 points.
The Argentinian malbecs that I have tried have all been in a very modern and well-made style, but I have not yet had a “wow” moment. This example, tasted blind, had an aroma of bright slightly cooked raisined fruit with some sweet notes. A high acid palate. 79 points.