Calcareous gravels deposited by the Tunuyan river in the South of Valle de Uco and by the Las Tunas river in the North of Valle de Uco have created the two most promising growing areas of Mendoza, which are only now being developed and explored, bringing a new dimension to the wines of Argentina.
Aromas of black fruit and spices blended with mineral, graphite notes and freshness typical of calcareous soils. The palate demonstrates the power of Gualtallary combined with the structure of Cabernet Sauvignon. A fine finessed texture, which is tight and refreshing.
Vineyard: This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon from the two outstanding subregions of Valle de Uco - the power and structure of Gualtallary with the elegance and freshness of Paraje Altamira. 20-year old vines.
Soil: Sandy with calcium carbonate-coated fine gravel up to 45 cm deep
Vinification techniques are performed in the most gentle way, avoiding the use of enzymes and must amendments. Fermentation is performed with native yeast only.
Superb with grilled red meat and grilled vegetable (Argentinean Asado).
Avennia Sestina Red Blend is made from 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc.
The Sestina is a poetic form from Medieval France. Just as a contemporary poet can use an old form like the Sestina to express modern ideas, we use the traditional Bordeaux blend to make modern wines that express Washington fruit. Sestina is our vision for an old vine blend where the focus is on structure, balance, and complexity. This wine is designed for the cellar, but is enjoyable now.
Sestina: This wine is a blockbuster, with black currant, black raspberry, saddle leather, freshly tilled earth, vanilla, and violet on the nose. Exceedingly rich and balanced on the palate, with great poise and structure for long aging. The finish echoes with fresh black fruits, minerally touches, and floral notes.
The 2020 Sestina showed beautifully, with lots of ripe black fruits, tobacco, and spring flower notes in a medium to full-bodied, fresh, focused, elegant style. It has fine tannins and a great finish and should drink nicely right out of the gate. The tannins here are terrific.
Jeb Dunnuck 94-96 Points
DAOU Vineyards Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Petit Verdot, 1% Cabernet Franc.
Hailing from the exemplary 2020 vintage, this DAOU Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon showcases Paso Robles as a world-class region for Bordeaux-style wines. Classic aromas of Oregon blackberry, Zante currant and cherry pipe tobacco anticipate subtle notes of cranberry, baking spice, licorice, slate and dark chocolate. The palate is voluptuous and velvety with a firm underlying structure. Lavish flavors of blueberry, black raspberry, wild cherry and cassis are beautifully integrated with hints of truffle, dried herbs and forest floor. A smooth, persistent finish lingers with impressions of of sweet cherry, black plum and mushroom. While polished and approachable now, this is a Cabernet Sauvignon that will continue to evolve with grace and nuance.
This is a widely available and reliably satisfying sip, offering dark and juicy aromas of baked berry along with toastier notes of hard spice and roasted cocoa nibs. The beefy palate is loaded with blackberry, roasted meat and rich fudge flavors, but it's the persistent acidity and tannic grip that elevates the experience.
-Wine Enthusiast 94 Points
The 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, made entirely with free-run juice, is blended with 23% Petit Verdot, 1% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc and was matured for 16 months in 50% new French oak. Deep ruby-purple, it offers savory aromas of black cherries, charcuterie, cedar, mushroom, tobacco, dried herbs and pencil shavings. The medium-bodied palate is chalky and fresh with savory fruits and a mineral-driven finish.
-Robert Parker's Wine Advocate 93 Points
Keermont Cabernet Sauvignon grows in Keermont's Cottage Lane Vineyard on the mid-slopes of the Helderberg. This vineyard is situated on the crest of a ridge (320m above sea level) so has aspects ranging from East through North to West. It is very exposed resulting in small vines with low yields. This has allowed to make a relatively fine grained Cabernet, but the clay soils translate to a wine with power, tension and fresh acidity. They blend in a couple of barrels of other varieties to add to the complexity of flavor and tannin structure.
All grapes used in producing the wines are grown on Keermont Vineyards. Most of the vineyard parcels grow on deep red clay rich soil derived from sandstone and granite and are surrounded by indigenous ‘fynbos’ vegetation. The vineyards are planted on steep mid-slopes high up in the valley between the Stellenbosch and Helderberg mountain ranges. Aspects vary from North East through North to West facing between 250 and 400 meters above sea level.
Dark ruby red in color, this is quite a serious vintage with a complex bouquet of ripe red berry fruit, cedarwood, and typical ‘fynbos’ flowers. The palate is full bodied, but gentle. Tannin structure is full and dense and coats the palate while the natural acidity keeps the ripe fruit in check. Savory notes of tomato paste and cloves add character to the bright red strawberry and cassis flavors which linger into a long, tight finish. Drink 2020 – 2035.
"Something of a crowd pleaser from Alex Starey, this is a comparatively forward cuvée of Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Cabernet Franc. Supple, ripe and perfumed, it combines fynbos and dried herb aromas, fig and mulberry flavours, supple tannins and plenty of body and alcohol. 2023-29"
- Tim Atkin (South Africa 2023 Report), 91 pts
Chakana Estate Malbec is made from 100 percent Malbec.
hakana is the name of the Southern Cross constellation. Its rotation in the sky throughout the year made it an effective agricultural calendar for the ancient Andean people.
The "yaguarete" (jaguar) on the label was known by the ancient Andean people as the "lord of the starred night"; the wildest known animal.
Chakana Estate Malbec is from Chakana's Altamira (3,200 ft elevation) and Gualtallary (5,500 ft elevation) vineyards.
The color is deep purple, very intense, typical of Malbec. Plum, brambly berries, spices and an iris/violet note are apparent on the nose. Intense, fruity flavors with velvety tannins.
"Combining grapes from Paraje Altamira and Los Chacayes, this pure Malbec is a classically perfumed Uco Valley red, showing fine tannins, nuanced oak, red cherry and blackberry fruit and a chalky frisson. Engagingly graceful and refined. 2023-30"
- Tim Atkin (2022 Argentina Special Report), 93 pts
Chakana Estate Red Mendoza is made from 70% Malbec, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc
Deep red color with violet hints. Dark fruits and exotic spices with tobacco and mocha hints. Elegant, well balanced, harmonious, long persistence with chocolate flavors.
Vineyard: Gualtallary in Valle de Uco.
2 days maceration on skins in temperature controlled steel vats; 12 days fermentation with selected yeasts allowed to rise to a maximum of 28°C.
- Tim Atkin MW, 93 pts
Chakana Cabernet Franc is made from 100 percent Cabernet Franc.
Chakana is the name of the Southern Cross constellation. Its rotation in the sky throughout the year made it an effective agricultural calendar for the ancient Andean people.
Expressive and ripe nose, juicy texture and intense fruit. Excellent balance, well integrated tannins and stunning minerality.
The 2020 Cabernet Franc Estate Selection comes from the Uco Valley and was aged for six months in French, 500-liter barrels. A rich reddish color. The nose offers ripe raspberry and blackberry with hints of mint and herbs that enhance the other flavors. The aging process makes itself felt in the mouth. The flow has a terse, broad texture initially, but then it grows more compact and linear. The mild acidity enlivens the reactive tannins, which establishes a good structure. A balanced take on the year, it will grow milder with more time in the bottle.
-Vinous 91 Points
The Chakana Estate
Looking for Chakana's other labels?
Malbec, Bonarda Argentina, Cabernet Sauvignon
Elegant and mature wines with 12 months of oak aging, produced
only with grapes grown in our own estates.
Ayni is our icon wine. It is the result of our permanent quest
for the best Malbec terroirs that Mendoza can offer. This wine
comes from the gravely limestone soils of Altamira: powerful
but fresh and lively, this 100% Malbec has been aged in
French oak barrels for 18 months. It is presented in 6-bottle
Chakana Estate Selection is a line of wines which represent the
best terroirs of each of our estates. Aged in French oak barrels
for 12 months these wines give pre-eminence to the expression
of terroir rather than oak. In every wine we try to craft a drinkable
and seductive style through the careful management of our
soils and grapes and in accordance with our consumers’ taste.
Chakana winery was founded by Juan Pelizzatti on May 2nd, 2002. Juan was driven to enter the wine industry first and foremost by his passion for wine, and also by the desire to invest his time and money on a product of agriculture. Although Juan did not know it at the time, the company was founded on the same day the Chakana was celebrated on the Andes highlands: on that same day, the Southern Cross (the Chakana for the Inca people) becomes vertical in the night Andean sky.
Juan's mission is to create an integral experience to introduce world consumers to the taste and culture of the Andes. His vision is to become one of the top 20 exporters of wine from Argentina, by consistently offering outstanding value for money.
"An incredible discovery for me, this winery was founded a decade ago and named after the Southern Cross ("Chakana" is the local Indian dialect for that constellation). It is located approximately 20 miles south of Mendoza in Agrelo. All three of these wines are highly recommended, and all are fabulous bargains in Malbec." - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (June 2012)
Wine is currently produced in four different levels at Chakana, by winemaker Gabriel Bloise:
Entry Level: Maipe
Reserve Level: Maipe Reserve, Cueva de las Manos, Nuna
The Chakana Estate Vineyards
Our grapes are grown in our own estates located in diverse premium micro-regions of Mendoza.
Each of them contributes its character to the final blend of our top quality wines.
Our wines are made in a state-of-the-art 2 million liter facility located in our Agrelo estate.
The Three Chakana Vineyard Areas:
LOCATION: AGRELO, Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza
Description: 120 ha. planted with different varieties between 2002 and 2010. Mainly Malbec,
Bonarda, Cabernet Franc, Viognier and Syrah.
Altitude: 960 meters above sea level.
TERROIR: Varied. Deep clay to loam. Gravel in some areas. Dry and cool climate with important
amplitude in temperature.
Wine Profile: Medium-bodied, elegant, fruity.
LOCATION: MAYOR DRUMMOND, Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza.
Description: 21 ha. 100 year old Malbec.
Altitude: 919 metres above sea level.
TERROIR: Loam and clay with 70 cm deep gravel. Some limestone. Urban
influenced climate, relatively warm.
WINE PROFILE: Complex, ripe fruit.
LOCATION: ALTAMIRA, Valle de Uco, Mendoza
Altamira I |16 ha. Malbec. Altitude: 1,068 meters above sea level.
Altamira II |26 ha. Malbec, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, planted in 2006. Altitude: 1,097 meters above sea
TERROIR: Sandy-loam with gravel at 50 cm depth. Dominated by limestone. Temperate climate.
WINE PROFILE: Full-bodied and mineral.
They also source wines from contract suppliers in Ugarteche and Medrano, for entry level wines, and in Vista Flores, for Estate Selection & Ayni levels.
The Wine Making Team:
WINEMAKING CONSULTANT: ALBERTO ANTONINI. Alberto is an Italian winemaker with a pioneering role in
the discovery and development of high quality Malbec. Alberto has brought to us his profound knowledge of
the wine industry, his uncompromising commitment to authenticity and the belief that Argentina will become
one of the leading winegrowing regions of the world.
VITICULTURE CONSULTANT: ALAN YORK. Alan is one of the world’s leading consultants on biodynamic
viticulture. He is also a permanent source of inspiration and insight into the relationship between man, spirit
WINEMAKER: GABRIEL BLOISE. Gabriel is one of the stars of the younger generation of Mendoza’s winemakers.
30 years old, he has already made 15 vintages in top estates in some of the most important winegrowing
areas in the world: Tuscany, Priorat, Australia, California, North Carolina, Salta and Mendoza. He is a tireless
explorer of the relationship between nature and its effect on the aromas in wine.
TERROIR CONSULTANT: PEDRO PARRA. Pedro's expertise helps us to understand how to identify and
manage the soil in each plot of our vineyards. His palate is fine-tuned to understanding the impact of soil
structure on the taste of wine. This has made him one of the 50 most influential people in wine according to
Maipe Torrontes is made from 100% Torrontes from the Salta region. Manual harvest.
7 day maceration with selected yeasts at 8°-10°C; fermentation with selected yeasts at 12°-14°.
Spring-like nose of fresh white peaches, pears, green apple, green melon and hints of jasmine and rose petals.
On the palate, it has a beautiful structure and acidity along with fruit flavors and plenty of body. Well balanced, this wine displays a pleasant freshness with citrus notes and a long finish.
Best enjoyed in its youth either by itself, or as a wonderful partner with smoked meats, mild to medium-strong cheeses, seafood and a great partner for spicy food as well.
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Roland Champion Champagne Cuvee Aramis Brut is made from 70% Pinot Meunier, 20% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay.
Very nice effervescence, fine bubbles - A nose spawn with notes of mature fruits such as quince and yellow fruits jelly. Aromas of biscuits and honey at the end of the palate, which remains supple, well structured, and with a beautiful length.
Black grapes from Verneuil and Vandière in the Marne Valley, argilo-limestone soil. Chardonnay grapes from Chouilly, “Grand Cru” from the famous “Côtes des blancs”, limestone soil and subsoil.
"Brilliant pale yellow straw color. Lively, complex aromas of honeyed biscuit, buttery praline, and poached Asian pear with a supple, lively, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and an elegant, long creme brulee, white balsamic reduced lemon, spiced nuts and tangerines, and grassy earth and minerals finish with well-integrated, fine tannins. A layered and vibrant champagne with cascading waves of fresh and mature flavors."
- Beverage Testing Institute (November 19th 2012), 95 pts
Finca los Cedros Single Vineyard Malbec is made from 100 percent Malbec.
Single vineyard wine from the Finca los Cedros vineyard in Paraje Altamira (3,600 ft. elevation). Planted in high density (8,000 plants per hectare) on calcareous gravel soils, this Malbec has a fresh & easy-drinking style with a mineral character.
Intense purple color. Plum, brambly berries, spices and an iris/violet note are apparent on the nose. Intense, fruity flavors with velvety tannins.
Fermentation with indigenous yeasts. Aged 12 months in oak barrels and concrete vats.
Excellent with roasted meats, duck, salad, pasta, pizza.
Long Shadows Pirouette Meritage is made from 58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 13% Malbec.
Philippe Melka, named one of the top nine winemakers in the world by Robert Parker, used small lots from Washington State's finest vineyards to craft this enticing red blend.
A variety of fermentation methods were used to enhance complexity and richness in this classic Bordeaux blend. Hand-harvested Cabernet was fermented in 400L French oak barrels that were gently rolled throughout fermentation to integrate the oak with refined, dark fruit flavors and give the wine its silky mouthfeel. All other varieties were fermented in traditional stainless steel tanks, with select lots enjoying longer skin contact to enhance the wine's dark color and mid-palate. The finished wine was aged 22 months in French oak barrels (75% new) before bottling unfiltered and unfined.
"The 2018 Pirouette checks in as 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, and 10% Petit Verdot aged 22 months in 85% new French oak. Deep purple-hued, it's a young, unevolved yet incredibly promising red with smoking good notes of ripe black and blue fruits as well as tobacco, graphite, and chocolate. Dense, full-bodied, and concentrated on the palate, it needs 3-5 years of bottle age but has the depth, balance, and class to evolve for 15-20 years or more."
- Jeb Dunnuck (May 2021), 95+ pts
"The 2018 Red Wine Pirouette blends 68% Cabernet Sauvignon with 22% Stone Tree Vineyard Merlot, and 10% Dionysus Vineyard Petit Verdot. The wine was aged 22 months in 85% new French oak prior to bottling. Aromatically beautiful, you are greeted to black rose petals and blackberry compote tones that mingle with wintergreen and chocolate covered espresso bean accents. Deep and concentrated in the mouth, with fantastic flavor density and tension, this finishes long with black fruits, loamy soils and minerals. Enjoy this texturally-beautiful Left Bank inspired Washington wine over the next twenty years to come. - Owen Bargreen"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (March 2022), 95 pts
Argot Bastard Tongue Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Sonoma Pinot Noir.
Inheriting an unbroken string of success, the “Bastard Tongue” arrives fully-formed and ready to impress. Always a blend from multiple Pinot Noir vineyards, this iteration of “BT” was selected from three distinct sites, each making their own unique contribution of Sonoma County terroir to the wine’s character.
Exploding forth on a tidal wave of high-toned, intense red and black fruits, this is a Pinot Noir that no stemware can contain. The palate’s profound depth is balanced by an inherent freshness, allowing the wine to crackle with brambly energy, while sustained by bass notes of underbrush, black tea, pie spice and baker’s chocolate. A formidable rendition of “Bastard Tongue”, and a deserving successor to its line.
Night harvested by hand throughout September, cluster and berry sorted by hand, de-stemmed, no crushing. 7-day cold soaks, followed by native fermentation in open-top bins. Average time on the skins, 14 days. Aging 20 months in French oak, 100% new. Never racked prior to bottling. Bottled unfined, unfiltered.
Very versatile for pairing. Goes well with grilled meat, vegetable, fish, poultry and cheese.
The 2021 Pinot Noir Bastard Tongue is pale to medium ruby-purple in color. It swans out of the glass with showy notes of kirsch, juicy raspberries, and fresh cranberries with hints of lavender, iris, iron ore, and mossy tree bark. The full-bodied palate is jam packed with bright, energetic black and red berry flavors, giving off a firework display of mineral and floral accents, supported by seamless freshness and a firm, fine-grained texture, finishing long, long, long. This is simply stunning.
-Wine Independent 97 Points