2018 Catena Malbec
Nicolas Catena has been instrumental in Argentina’s progress over the last three decades, bringing the country's wine industry into line with world class standards. What you can now get for your money in the present day climate are seriously good expressions of the nation's signature varietal, Malbec, that rival many Australian reds for punch and price. Made by fourth generation vintner Laura Catena and chief winemaker, Alejandro Vigil, this wine is sourced from four high altitude vineyards in Maipú, Lujan de Cuyo, Tupungato and San Carlos. Each vineyard is specifically farmed in preparation for its role in the final blend. Eighty year old vines in the Lunlunta (Maipù) Vineyard lend soft, sweet texture and the lauded Catena cuttings in the Agrelo (Luján de Cuyo) vineyard add notes of spice. The cold nights in the Altamira (San Carlos) vineyard lend bright, crisp acidity and the intense sunshine in the Gualtallary (Tupungato) vineyard give explosive floral aromatics and concentrated structure. Maturation takes place in a mix of new (35%), second and third use French oak barrels for 14 months.
A delightful, richly flavoured Malbec that is also structured and refined.
Dense inky black core with a deep dark red black shaded hue. Wafting out of the glass with ample intensity are aromatics of blackcurrant, dark cherry, liquorice and light blueberry followed by some dried herbs, black olive and hints of graphite. Rich and velvety upon entry, the savoury mid weighted palate features ripe blackcurrant, dark cherry and blueberry fruits over more subtle liquorice, dried herb and spicy vanillin cedar nuances. Fine grained yet well structured tannins fan out onto a long fleshy yet refined aftertaste.
Drink over the next 5-6 years.
Lots of blackberry and blueberry character with a black-tea undertone. Turns to flowers. Medium to full body, fresh acidity and a long and gorgeous finish. Vivid and bright. Transparent. Drink now.