Country: Argentina Region: San Rafael
Vintage: 2016 Colour: Red Style: Dry
According to Jancis Robinson, Nicolás Catena Zapata is the man credited with putting Argentine Malbec on the global wine map. Founded in 1902, Argentina’s Bodega Catena Zapata is known for its pioneering role in resurrecting Malbec and in discovering extreme high altitude terroirs in the Andean foothills of Mendoza.
The Catena wines are a special blend of vineyards at the higher altitude. The wine is made by fourth generation vintner, Laura Catena and chief winemaker, Alejandro Vigil.
This wine is made from fruit sourced from four different vineyards. The grapes are divided into lots that are harvested at different times. All the vineyards are found at high altitudes:
Lunlunta 3,018 ft (920m) elevation:Agrelo 3,117 ft (950 m) elevation:El Cepillo, Eugenio Bustos 3,593 ft (1,090 m) elevation:Gualtallary 4,757 ft (1,450 m) elevation:
Although Argentina has a continental climate there are two key factors that impact on the quality of their fruit, they are latitude and altitude. Altitude in Mendoza varies from 600 metres to 1,500 metres above sea level. The higher the altitude of the vineyard the cooler the region. For every 165 metre increase the average temperature of the vineyard decreased by 1 degree. In the cooler regions the tannin are more apparent in the warmer regions the tannin and spice are enhanced.
The warm days are replaced by cooler evenings in the higher altitude vineyards and this means the grapes ripen during the day, but cool down in the evening which is crucial to the quality of the wines.
Ageing Potential: 10 Years
This is a superb Argentine Malbec, it was fermented using wild yeasts and was aged for 12-14 months in new and used barrels. If you are looking for a pure and classy expression of this wine style, then this is the wine to go for.
Food Matches: Red Meat / Lamb / Chicken / Venison