WCC Argentine Malbec
at Nicoles's Bistro, Albany, NY (11/2/2006)
The WCC met to taste Argentine Malbecs. The wines were served non-blind in random order without decanting.
All wines were purchased locally, except for the 2 Foster wines which were bought by a group member in Argentina.
The US price of each wine is given after the name of the wine.
The wines were served non-blind because none of us knew anything anyway.
I'm not sure how much I know now that I've tasted these.
There was little correlation between quality and price to my palate, and because we had such a narrow range of vintages,
I still have no idea how these wines age.
With Charcuterie: Country Pate with Rillettes & Saucisson
1. 2003 Bodegas Norton, Lo Tengo, Mendoza ($8)
[100% Malbec] Appealing nose of ripe red fruits, cloves, and orange peel. Thick, tart, tasty. Chewy tannins. 89 points.
2. 2004 Domino del Plata, Ben Marco, Mendoza ($23)
[12% Bonarda, 1% Cab Franc; winemaker Susana Balbo, wife of owner Pedro Marchevsky] Muted black raspberry nose.
Smooth and ripe, but biting on the finish. 88 points.
3. 2003 El Felino, Mendoza ($13)
[From the Marchiori Vyd. Part of the Nativo Collection from Paul Hobbs, Luis Barraud, and Andrea Marchiori; 100% Malbec]
Nasty chlorine nose. Corked. NR
4. 2005 Bodega Catena Zapata, Alamos, Mendoza ($8)
[100% Malbec] Smoky black fruit nose. Long, clean finish. WOTN for me. Great balance and length. 93 points.
Click on an image with a border here for a larger view of that image.
With Potage au Chou [Napa Cabbage and Roquefort Soup]
5. 2002 Enrique Foster Riserva, Finca Castro Barros, Lujan De Cuyo, Mendoza ($25)
[100% Malbec] Smoky cherry nose. Sweet black fruit and biting tannins. Good balance, but needs time! 91–93 points.
6. 2005 Altos Las Hormigas, Mendoza ($8)
[100% Malbec] Bright fragrant nose of cherries and cedar. WOTF for me. 92 points.
7. 2003 Budini, Mendoza ($9)
[100% Malbec] Muted nose. Ripe, thick, sweet. 88 points.
8. 2004 Bodegas Nieto Senetiner Reserva, Mendoza ($7)
[100% Malbec] Biting, fizzy, too much VA for me! NR
With Classic Cassoulet with Duck Confit, Lamb Sausage, and Pork Shank
9. 2004 Pasqual Toso, Barrancas Vyd., Reserva, Mendoza ($7)
[100% Malbec] Huge bright red fruit nose. Big, sweet, tannic. Excellent length and potential. My #2 WOTN. 92–94 points.
10. 2003 Trapiche, Viña José Blanco Single Vineyard, Ugarteche, Mendoza ($28)
[100% Malbec] Big bright red fruit. Thick, but simple. 91?
11. 2003 Bodega Catena Zapata, Catena Alta, Mendoza ($38)
[100% Malbec] Very thick and young. 89–? Points.
12. 2004 Tikal, Amorio, Mendoza ($38)
Love Affair] Biting, delicious. Sweet finish. 89 points.
With Brie Baked in Phyllo Purse with Poached Pears in Port
13. 2002 Enrique Foster Limited Edition, Lujan De Cuyo, Mendoza ($45)
[100% Malbec] Ripe, sweet nose. Good balance. 91 points.
14. 2003 Luca, Altos de Mendoza ($28)
[100% Malbec] Black cherry nose. Thick, sweet, long, lovely. 92 points. My #3 WOTN
WOTN Voting (3pts each person for #1, 2pts for #2, 1pt for #3)
|1||18||2004 Domino del Plata, Ben Marco ($23)|
|2||17||2002 Enrique Foster Limited Edition ($45)|
|3||12||2004 Pasqual Toso, Barrancas Vyd., Reserva ($7)|
|4||4||2005 Bodega Catena Zapata, Alamos ($8) |
|5(tie)||3||2002 Enrique Foster Riserva, Finca Castro Barros ($25)|
|5(tie)||3||2003 Budini ($9)|
|5(tie)||3||2003 Trapiche, Viña José Blanco, Ugarteche ($28)|
|5(tie)||3||2004 Tikal, Amorio ($38)|
|5(tie)||3||2003 Luca, Altos de Mendoza ($28)|
All orignal content © Ken Vastola