April 17th is World Malbec Day, and we’re starting the celebrations early by exploring Mendoza, Argentina and what makes the wine produced here so special. We turned to Martha Cisneros, Wine Blogger and Co-Founder of Latinas Wine Club (a.k.a. @winedivaa on Instagram), to help guide us through the region. Pour yourself a glass and join us in raising a toast to Argentina and World Malbec Day!
Malbec is originally from France but has thrived and grown beautifully in Argentina. Argentinian Malbec producers have made it their mission to showcase only excellent quality wines at a great price, something they share in common with 90+ Cellars. To celebrate this region, let's dig deeper into what makes the wines from Argentina so special.
The wine region of Mendoza is perched at the Andes Mountains foothills and is Argentina's largest viticultural area. Most of the vineyards are grown in the hills, and the grapes grown here tend to be elegant, displaying floral aromas and freshness. Los Andes also has a Continental climate with a cooling effect. These are some of the factors vital to fruit quality and, therefore, the wines' success.
There are many sub-regions within Mendoza. For instance, Lujan de Cuyo is one of Mendoza's three sub-regions and is home to some of the most famous names in Argentinian wine, including 90+ Cellars Lot 23 Old Vine Malbec. The vineyards stretch from the Mendoza River out towards the mountains, which can average over 3,000 feet. While the region may be known as one of the world's premier Malbec regions, this high elevation area also produces world-class Cabernet Sauvignon.
Malbec is the most planted grape in Argentina. However, the style of Malbec varies depending on where it is grown. On one hand, Malbec grapes tend to be elegant and finessed if grown in high altitudes, displaying floral aromas and freshness. On the other hand, lower altitude grapes tend to be fuller-bodied, with accentuated black fruit.
An example of high-altitude Malbec is 90+ Cellars Lot 23 Old Vine Malbec. Meticulously tended Malbec grapes grown on high-elevation old vines in Lujan de Cuyo make 90+ Cellars Lot 23 a distinctive quality-price Malbec. After fermenting in stainless steel, the wine ages for six months in new and used French oak. This process gives this exquisite wine aromas of blackberries, blueberries, plum, and spice. On the palate, it is well balanced with structure and mild tannins. Dark cherry and hints of wood smoke emerge on the finish to leave an elegant and lasting impression.
Cabernet Sauvignon from Los Andes
Perhaps when you think of Argentinean Wine, Malbec is the first thing that comes to mind. Nonetheless, Cabernet Sauvignon grown in Los Andes is an elegant expression of the varietal at an excellent price.
Lot 23 Cabernet Sauvignon is fermented in stainless steel and then aged six months in a new French oak blend. As a result, the bouquet displays a melody of black currants and red cherries rising above a backdrop of leather and cocoa. You'll taste juicy, dark berry fruit and a trickle of sweet spice and savory plums on the palate.
The wines of Argentina are not only a symbol of the transformation of Argentina's wine industry but also the starting point for the development of this grape, an emblem for Argentina and Latin America worldwide. To celebrate the achievements of Argentina's wine-growing success, we celebrate World Malbec Day on April 17th.
Make sure you order the Lot 23 Malbec to Celebrate and Commemorate this day here.