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Wine from Argentina

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Argentine wine has flooded the US wine market and rightly so. Their wines are excellent and the price almost always falls in what we call the value category. This country has more 90 point wines under 15 dollars than any other country. Their most popular grape being the Malbec and the most popular region being Mendoza. Argentina is the fifth largest wine producer in the world and there viticulture dates back to 1557. Up until the 1990’s Argentine wine was focused on mass production. However we are now seeing quality wines coming from the use of modern viticulture techniques.

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4 Gatos Locos Malbec 2017

4 Gatos Locos Malbec is made from 100% Malbec.

4 gatos locos is a project created by Gabriel Bloise, Facundo Bonamaizon, Mariana and Juan Pelizzatti, winemaker, viticulturist and founders of Chakana (respectively), and it is based on a 20 ha vineyard in Alto Gualtallary, the most prominent growing region in Argentina.
 
The vineyard is located at 1360 mts a.s.l on a 10% slope on the Sierra del Jaboncillo, a relatively old geological formation near the alluvial fan of the Las Tunas river, in the Tupungato area, in north western Valle de Uco. The long exposure to arid conditions of calcium rich gravel has allowed microbes to develop one of the areas richest in calcium carbonate in Mendoza. The altitude, the slope, the gravel and the calcium carbonate create unique deep, textured wines which have become distinctive of this area. Moderate high temperatures controlled by high altitude in sunny conditions produce perfectly ripe grapes of unusually intense color and great vitality, balanced by the mineral freshness of calcium carbonate. Local aromátic plants naturally occurring in native vegetation areas interspersed in the vineyard give the wine a unique herbal touch that underline the character of the place.
 
4 Gatos locos is packaged with 4 different labels, reflecting the different personalities of the partners in this project. In an industry dominated by narcissistic efforts of self promotion and luxury, 4 gatos locos (a popular frase in argentina to represent “nobodies”) represents an authentic collective effort to develop outstanding wine that captures the personality and the potential of a place, which we strongly believe it is the best Mendoza has to offer.

Residual sugar: <1,8 g/lPh: 3,8
Acidity: 5,7 g/l
Aged in new french oak 500 liter barrels and 5000 liter foudre for 18 months. Then aged for 12 months in bottle.
Fermented with natural yeast, macerated for 28 days.

Review:

"Made with fruit from ten-year-old vines in Gualtallary on soils with a high calcium carbonate content, this new wine is spicy and highly perfumed, with notes of rosemary and oregano, dense, compact tannins and a firm, chiselled finish. 2022-30"

- Tim Atkin (Argentina 2019 Special Report), 93 pts


 93 Points
Avatar Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

Avatar Cabernet Sauvignon  is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Aged in 100% French Oak barrels for 4 months and then 6 months in the bottle beofre release

Avatar is the embodiment of the Agrelo´s terroir in a wine. Striking, audacious, joyful, profound. A spontaneous and honest experience for the senses. Challenging pleasures.

Presents a vibrant red color with glints of bordeaux. Great aromatic intensity. The spiciness of the nose is echoed on the palate and combines well with juicy red fruit flavors. It expresses in a very fresh way, with red fruits, sweet tannins and balanced acidity.

Coming from Agrelo district.
Average of the vines is 25 years old.
Soil type: Alluvial and sandy soils with a big amount of rocks just besides the Mendoza river. This is one of the most prestigious terroirs in Argentina.
Winemaking: Crushing, destemming and maceration pre-fermentative at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of skin contact maceration. Aged in French oak barrels for 4 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.
Wine was slightly filtered before bottling.

Avatar Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Avatar Cabernet Sauvignon  is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Aged in 100% French Oak barrels for 4 months and then 6 months in the bottle beofre release

Avatar is the embodiment of the Agrelo´s terroir in a wine. Striking, audacious, joyful, profound. A spontaneous and honest experience for the senses. Challenging pleasures.

Presents a vibrant red color with glints of bordeaux. Great aromatic intensity. The spiciness of the nose is echoed on the palate and combines well with juicy red fruit flavors. It expresses in a very fresh way, with red fruits, sweet tannins and balanced acidity.

Coming from Agrelo district.
Average of the vines is 25 years old.
Soil type: Alluvial and sandy soils with a big amount of rocks just besides the Mendoza river. This is one of the most prestigious terroirs in Argentina.
Winemaking: Crushing, destemming and maceration pre-fermentative at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of skin contact maceration. Aged in French oak barrels for 4 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.
Wine was slightly filtered before bottling.

Avatar Malbec 2018

Avatar Malbec is 100% Malbec.

Aged in 100% French Oak barrels for 4 months and then 6 months in the bottle beofre release

Presents a vibrant red color with glints of bordeaux. Great aromatic intensity. It expresses in a very fresh way, with red fruits and a remarkable sweetness. In the mouth it’s balanced with round and sweet tannins, rich and with a marked acidity.

Coming from Agrelo district. 
Average of the vines is 25 years old. 
Soil type: Alluvial and sandy soils with a big amount of rocks just besides the Mendoza river. This is one of the most prestigious terroirs in Argentina.
Winemaking: Crushing, destemming and maceration pre-fermentative at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of skin contact maceration. Aged in French oak barrels for 4 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.
Wine was slightly filtered before bottling.

Ayni Malbec Paraje Altamira 2018

Deep ruby-red in color with violet hints. Complex and intense bouquet, features blackberries, cherries and plums, with delicate floral notes and spices. Balanced and fresh mouth, full-bodied with good length of spices.

The grapes come from the fantastic area of Paraje Altamira in the Uco Valley, Mendoza.
Irrigation: Drip 
Harvest: Manual 
Maceration: 4 days cold soaking below 10°C in stainless steel tanks 
Alcoholic fermentation: 80% of the wine in stainless steel tanks for 15 days with wild yeasts, 20% of the wine in 225-liter closed French oak barrels 
Malolactic fermentation: Yes

Pairs well with grilled meats and stews.


Review:

Very perfumed floral nuances scented with some fresh herbaceous notes, slightly tangy mineral nose too. Lovely freshness and chalky tannins, nice follow through and well-textured. Great fruit purity, attractive use of oak.”

- Decanter World Wine Awards 2020, 97 points/Platinum Medal


 97 Points
Ayni Malbec Paraje Altamira 2018 (magnum)

THESE ARE MAGNUM BOTTLES


Ayni Malbec Paraje Altamira is made from 100 percent Malbec.

Deep ruby-red in color with violet hints. Complex and intense bouquet, features blackberries, cherries and plums, with delicate floral notes and spices. Balanced and fresh mouth, full-bodied with good length of spices.

The grapes come from the fantastic area of Paraje Altamira in the Uco Valley, Mendoza.
Irrigation: Drip 
Harvest: Manual 
Maceration: 4 days cold soaking below 10°C in stainless steel tanks 
Alcoholic fermentation: 80% of the wine in stainless steel tanks for 15 days with wild yeasts, 20% of the wine in 225-liter closed French oak barrels 
Malolactic fermentation: Yes

Pairs well with grilled meats and stews.


Review:

Very perfumed floral nuances scented with some fresh herbaceous notes, slightly tangy mineral nose too. Lovely freshness and chalky tannins, nice follow through and well-textured. Great fruit purity, attractive use of oak.”

- Decanter World Wine Awards 2020, 97 points/Platinum Medal


 97 Points
Ayni Rose Nature Sparkling NV

Ayni is the quechua name of a principle of reciporcity practised for centuries by the andean cultures, it means in order to receive something you first have to give. Ayni is also the name of our most special vineyard, located in Paraje Altamira one of the best appelations within Uco Valley in Mendoza.

Argentina has a history of sparkling wine production since the early 1960’s.

Tasting Notes: Aged for 18 months on its lees before disgorgement. It’s a creamy with a nice toast aroma. It is made in a well-balanced style, with fine bubbles and a dry, palate-cleansing finish.

Vineyards: 100% Altamira in the Uco Valley subregion
Soil type: Sandy loam over calcium carbonate coated gravels, 30 to 50 cm deep
Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir
Average age of the vines: 10 years 
Winemaking: Methode Traditionnelle (Champenoise). Aged sur lattes for 18 months. Made following the tratidional method, fermentation goes until it gets totallay dry. No liquor is added to keep the freshnes, elegance and purity of is clean profile.

A versatile wine, good on its own or paired with any food.

"An impressive first release for this all-Pinot Noir bubbly from Paraje Altamira, aged for 18 months on its lees before disgorgement. It’s a creamy, bready, well-balanced style, with fine bubbles and a dry, palate-cleansing finish. A fizz to watch. 2017-22"
- Tim Atkin (Argentina Special Report 2017), 92 pts

"Perhaps with the same sort of structural power that Altamira reds possess, this sparkling rosé shows something immutable in body, lively texture, bracing acidity. The wine spent 18 months on the lees and this, no doubt, provides flavor complexities well beyond the fruit, but still the fruit predominates with intense aromas, substantial, and crisp, lively acidity. If what you’re looking for is a sparkler for carpaccio or roast beef, this is it."
- Descorchads 2018, 94 pts

 94 Points
Ayni Vino de Parcella Gravas 2017

Ayni Vino de Parcella Gravas is 100% Malbec

Ayni Gravas was created show the diversity of wine profiles that can be derived from Paraje Altamira’s terroir. The goal with this particular wine is to show a markedly calcareous profile that derives in a more intense black fruit flavor profile and a chalky tannin structure with great age potential, as opposed to the more feminine and elegant style which is typical from Paraje Altamira wines.

Chakana plans to further develop this wine, increasing its accents through vineyard selection and oak aging. Over time, production can potentially increase to 10,000 bottles (maximum).

Ayni Gravas is produced from smaller plots of a 20 hectare vineyard in Paraje Altamira, Valle de Uco, Mendoza. Paraje Altamira is a Geographical Indication (IG) located on the alluvial cone of the Tunuyan River. The Ayni vineyard has been planted on virgin soils on the upper (south western) side of the cone. The vineyard is crossed by numerous smaller river beds that once formed the river delta, and these create a pattern of different soil depths and gravel formations, imparting very different characteristics on the wine. Ayni Gravas is produced only with the sections of the vineyard where the calcium carbonated gravels come to the surface and the vines grow amongst them with no soil. Only a smaller percentage of the vineyard (approximately 20%) features these conditions.

Pairs well with grilled meats and stews.

Review:

"Dark medium ruby. Enticing violet lift to the aromas of boysenberry, blackberry and licorice; wild but not excessively so. Juicy and fine-grained, with penetrating chalky minerality enlivening the flavors of crushed blackberry, flowers and spices. In a very savory, almost salty style, finishing dry and firm, with fresh, fine-grained tannins and lovely energy and length. (just 12.5% alcohol; from the same vineyard as the Ayni Vineyard Paraje Altamira but from a selection of soils) - Stephen Tanzer"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (June 2019), 91 pts

"There is a new 2017 Ayni Parcela Gravas, a selection of Malbec from their Ayni vineyard in Paraje Altamira from very shallow plots with a high content of limestone. The nature of the soils might have resulted in some stress in a warm and dry year like 2017, and the wine felt a bit ripe and with harsher tannins than the regular Ayni. For the rest, the production and élevage remained more or less the same. I look forward to seeing the results in a cooler year. For now, the tannins need a little bit of time in bottle. 3,000 bottles were filled in March 2019. - Luis Gutiérrez"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 91 pts


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Advocate: 91
Bressia Conjuro 2011

Bressia Conjuro 50% Malbec, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 20% Merlot

Aged in 70% French oak (Taransaud, Mistral, and Radoux), and 30% American oak.

This wine is a blend of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot from the Tupungato Valley, Mendoza, at 1,100 meters above sea level.
Its elegant, expressive aromas prepare us to drink a full-bodied, broad wine, very elegant and with a long, unctuous finish that leaves us with a seductive, pleasurable sensation. This wine comes from high quality grapes grown in the Uco Valley and was aged for 18 months in new French and American oak barrels, then in bottle for 24 months

Bressia Lagrima Canela 2017

Bressia Lagrima Canela is made from 70 % Chardonnay, 30 % Semillon

Barrel fermented for 14 months in new French and American oak

Lagrima Canela means 'cinnamon tears'. This white blend shows an intense greenish-yellow wine with luminous golden highlights. It has fresh, elegant floral aromas, lent to it by its grape varieties, as well as melon, pear and toasty oak. Medium bodied with a creamy texture and outstanding depth and concentration.

Light gold colored with a perfume of candle wax, pear, melon, and toasty oak, on the palate the wine is medium-bodied with well-integrated oak, dry flavors, a creamy texture, and outstanding depth and concentration.

 


"Always among the best white blends in Argentina, this cuvée of Chardonnay with 30% Semillon is lightly oaked with some malolactic fermentation for added texture. Stone fruit and herbal flavours flow across the tongue, with some baking spices and a soft, caressing finish. 2018-21."

- Tim Atkin (Argentina Special Report 2018), 94 pts


 94 Points
Bressia Monteagrelo Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Bressia Monteagrelo Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100 percent Cabernert Sauvignon.

Vineyards are 3,000 feet above sea level, located in Lujan de Cuyo.

"Bressia Monteagrelo combines the soul of each varietal, its intimate relationship with the origin and its deep roots with a unique terroir in the world...Monteagrelo is our family of wines and, as in any family, each one expresses their own identity and varietal personality that makes them unforgettable and unrepeatable." - Walter Bressia

Intense red color with purple tones. Pepper, spice and red fruit aromas on the nose. Well balanced, ripe and harmonious. Full bodied with great structure.


Bressia Monteagrelo Syrah 2016

Bressia Monteagrelo Syrah is 100 percent Syrah.

Bressia Monteagrelo combines the soul of each varietal, its intimate relationship with the origin and its deep roots with a unique terroir in the world...Monteagrelo is our family of wines and, as in any family, each one expresses their own identity and varietal personality that makes them unforgettable and unrepeatable." - Walter Bressia

Vineyards are located in Lujan de Cuyo, 3,100 feet above sea level. Planted 6,900 plants per hectare.

Intense red color. Spicy aromas, coffee and cinnamon notes. Delicate and well balanced. Good concentration, ample in the mouth, elegant flavors, harmonious and a long finish.

Aged 12 months in new French oak vats


Casir dos Santos Estate Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

CLOSEOUT



Aged in French oak barrels for 8 months in our cellar. Lovely deep red color, with ripe blackberry fruit. The spiciness of the nose is echoed on the palate and combines well with juicy red fruit flavors. Well integrated oak and fine tannins ensures a long and classic finish.

Coming from a sustainable 50-year old plot, grapes are crushed, destemmed and go through pre-fermentative maceration at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of maceration with must. Aged in French oak barrels for 8 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.


Review:

"Serious ripeness and structure as well as a good freshness for the vintage. An impressive Cabernet. The balance of generous tannins, fullish body and black cherry fruit is very convincing. Drink now or hold."
- James Suckling (April 2018), 92 pts



 92 Points
Casir dos Santos Estate Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2015


Aged in French oak barrels for 8 months in our cellar. Lovely deep red color, with ripe blackberry fruit. The spiciness of the nose is echoed on the palate and combines well with juicy red fruit flavors. Well integrated oak and fine tannins ensures a long and classic finish.

Coming from a sustainable 50-year old plot, grapes are crushed, destemmed and go through pre-fermentative maceration at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of maceration with must. Aged in French oak barrels for 8 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.

Review:

"A good introduction to Argentine cabernet sauvignon, thanks to its vibrant blueberries and fullish, supple body. The soft tannins have a chocolatey edge and fill out the medium-full body nicely. Drink now."
- James Suckling (March 2019), 90 pts

 90 Points
Casir dos Santos Estate Reserve Malbec 2016

Casir dos Santos Estate Reserve Malbec is 100 percent Malbec.

Aged 8 months in French oak barrels and then 6 months in the bottle.

Deep ruby color with aromas of ripe blackberries and plums and notes of forest, smoke and spice. Complex and structured with firm and elegant tannins. Well balanced acidity. A great reflection of the terroir.

Coming from a sustainable 50-year old plot, grapes are crushed, destemmed and go through pre-fermentative maceration at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of maceration with must. Aged in French oak barrels for 8 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.

The grapes from Vista Flores are harvested in three different dates, with approximately 30 days between the first and last harvest. The result is three wines with distinctive and markedly different nuances. 3 weeks skin contact maceration; ML with fine sediments. Aged in French oak (first and second use) for 8 months.

The resulting wines are tasted & the final blend is assembled prior to bottling. Aged 6 months in bottle prior to release.




Chakana Chardonnay 2019

Yellow with green hints Pineapple aromas with toasty notes and a fresh mineral character and finish.

Grape Varietals 90% Chardonnay and 10% Sauvignon Blanc
ABV 14%
Aging 20% barrel-fermented and aged for 4 to 6 months in the same barrels
Serving Temp 50-55 degrees Farenheit°F
Closure Cork
Agricultural Method Sustainable
Residual Sugar
Dry - less than 4 grams/liter
Review:
"In the future, it’s possible that this will be released as an Ayni Chardonnay to partner Chakana’s top red. It’s certainly promising, with notes of honey, spice and stone fruit underpinned by the chalky freshness that’s a feature of Paraje Altamira wines. 2018-22"
- Tim Atkin, Argentina Special Report 2018, 91 pts


 

 

Chakana Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

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).


Chakana Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

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).


Chakana Estate Chardonnay 2018

Yellow with green hints Pineapple aromas with toasty notes and a fresh mineral character and finish.

Grape Varietals 90% Chardonnay and 10% Sauvignon Blanc
ABV 14%
Aging 20% barrel-fermented and aged for 4 to 6 months in the same barrels
Serving Temp 50-55 degrees Farenheit°F
Closure Cork
Agricultural Method Sustainable
Residual Sugar
Dry - less than 4 grams/liter


 

 

Chakana Estate Malbec 2018

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.

Review:


Dominated by grapes from Gualtallary and Los Chacayes, with 15% from Paraje Altamira, this is like a version of the Uco Valley’s greatest hits. Effortlessly combined by Gabriel Bloise, it’s a classic expression of a very smart vintage, with just 10% new wood and layers of fresh, bright, chalky blackberry and blueberry fruit. 2021-25

- Tim Atkin (March 2020),93 pts 




 


 93 Points
Chakana Estate Red Mendoza 2017

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.


 

Review:


A high-altitude blend from organic vineyards planted at 1,100m in the Altamira and Gualtallary regions of the Uco Valley. A wild-fermented Malbec-dominant blend with 25% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc, that's aged for 10 months: 70% in French oak and 30% in concrete. Savoury black fruit aromas with pretty violet top notes on the nose. Full-bodied, with firm tannins, but also good freshness. Savoury and spicy black fruit on the palate, but with some brighter cranberry notes too - a good food wine for hearty dishes. Suitable for vegetarians and vegans. - Julie Sheppard"

- Decanter Magazine (October 2019), 90 pts


 90 Points
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