Malbec Argentino 2019
99 points, “This is made from over 100-year-old vineyards and offers blackberries with blue fruit and dark chocolate. Shows bark and black truffle undertones, too. Tight and more focused than in past vintages. The quality of the tannins is more precise and fine.” – James Suckling
96 points, “It feels like there was a big change in the 2019 Catena Zapata Malbec Argentino, a year with a vibrant palate and very clean and focused aromas and flavours… It's still a little more voluptuous than the wines from Gualtallary, as this mixes grapes from Angélica (Lunlunta) and Nicasia (Altamira). It's nicely textured and tasty, medium-bodied and with a vibrant finish.” – Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
Forget what the vintage says, Catena Zapata Malbec Argentino is really more than 100 years old. This thrilling wine represents an epic family journey spanning 120 years to produce an Argentine Malbec that can stand shoulder to shoulder with the great wines of the world.
There’s much excitement about the 2019 vintage in Argentina. Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate deems it an “extraordinary” year and has given it the highest rating any Argentine vintage has ever received. So, when one of the country’s greatest producers creates a celebration of the national grape, Malbec, from incredible old-vine plots grown at high altitude, then you know you’re in for something truly remarkable.
The stunning label was designed by Stranger & Stranger and depicts the tale of Malbec as it wraps around the bottle. Skipping Roman plantings, it starts with Eleanor of Aquitaine near the bridge at Cahors, where she championed the grape in the Middle Ages. Next comes The Immigrant, symbolising Malbec’s movement to the ‘New World’ in the early 1800s via explorers and colonisers. Then there’s the macabre figure of Madame Phylloxera, who brought death to Malbec in the Old World, but allowing it to be reborn in places like Argentina. And finally, there’s Adrianna Catena standing over Bodega Catena Zapata – a striking building inspired by the Mayan pyramids – ushering in the renaissance of this phenomenal and resilient grape variety.
The grapes for the deeply personal Catena Zapata Malbec Argentino come from the Nicasia and Angélica Vineyards (named after Nicolás Catena Zapata’s grandmother and mother respectively). They’re wild fermented in barrels and the wine is aged in French oak for 18 months creating a wine that holds you in a vice-like grip of powerful dark berries and crème de cassis. Beneath the fruit there are notes of freshly ground coffee, blueberries, soil after the rain, spices, bittersweet dark chocolate, wild mushroom and the salinity of a sea breeze. Despite its richness, depth and concentration, it has an airy freshness imparted by its high altitude that makes it buzz with an electric energy. This is one of the world’s greatest Malbecs.
Catena Zapata was named “The World’s Most Admired Wine Brand 2020” by Drinks International. Established in 1902, the bodega played a pioneering role in the explosion of Malbec and in exploring extreme high-altitude winemaking. Nicolás Catena Zapata, a former Decanter Man of the Year, is widely credited with putting Argentinean wine on the world map and should be placed on a level with the likes of Robert Mondavi in Napa and Angelo Gaja in Piedmont. It is “the most important winery in Argentina” according to Wine Advocate, who also notes that: “the name Catena on the label is a guarantee of quality.” The winery is now run by Dr Laura Catena, the fourth-generation vintner and a graduate of both Harvard and Stanford Universities, who is fast becoming the face of Argentinian wine. When she’s not making wine or writing books, she is a part-time physician of Emergency Medicine in San Francisco – a suitably remarkable winemaker for an equally remarkable estate.
£12 per 100.00ml
SKU No.: 3479827
Style No.: 889986
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