SonVida Alegria Red Blend is made from 60% Malbec, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Syrah.
We named our vineyard in the Andes of Argentina after our daughter Alegría. When we first saw the land, she was a baby in our arms. Now, as she goes to college, this wine celebrates her journey.
From a single vineyards, 1,029 meters (3,000 feet) above sea level near Paraje Altamira, Mendoza.
Age of the vines is 13 years (planted in 2002).
Aged 15 months in French and American Oak Barrel
Red meat, pork, grilled chicken.
Almost 20 years ago, Sonia and David went back-packing in the wine country of Northern California and fell in love with the idea of owning a vineyard.
SonVida is Sonia's life and David's dream. After an international career in television news for the BBC, ITN and CNN, Sonia began her adventure in wine. She is a Certified Sommelier of the Court of Master Sommeliers, and is studying for an international Wine MBA at the Bordeaux Ecole de Management, a grand ecole in France.
After a career as a foreign correspondent for Reuters and ITN, David is now a diplomat with the United Nations. David is also a Certified Sommelier of the Court of Master Sommeliers, and holds an Advanced Certificate from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET) of London.
SonVida is in the heart of Malbec country, the Valle de Uco, in a small area known as Altamira, close to the village of La Consulta. Their neighbors are Chandon, Catena, and Achaval Ferrer. Close by, sharing the valley, are O.Fournier, Clos de los Siete, Finca La Celia, and Lurton.
Their terroir is defined by the Andes. They are at 1,029 meters above sea level. Snow melts high in the mountains, and waters the vines. The earth is strewn with rounded pebbles, carried down the Andes over millennia, by streams and glaciers. The sun shines brightly 330 days a year. The cooling nighttime breezes help the grapes keep their freshness and mature with full flavors.
Sunset Hills Mosaic Red Blend is made from Merlot 23.5%, Cabernet Franc 58%, Petit Verdot 17.7%
Dark tobacco and leather alongside cooked blueberry and plum. The structure is solid leading to an even finish.
Avennia Sestina Red Blend is made from 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 10% 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 2015 Sestina is showing very well, offering up a rich, more exuberant bouquet than the 2014 rendition. This emphasizes notes of cassis, black plums, dark chocolate, espresso roast and a subtle framing of new oak. On the palate, it's full-bodied and lavish but controlled, with an ample, more sun-kissed core of fruit and fine-grained structuring tannins. Like the 2014, it's a blend of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc. While the 2014 and 2015 are quite different in style, it's hard to choose between them qualitatively. While it needs a few years in the cellar, I suspect the 2015 will hit its peak sooner. - William Kelley"
- Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate (Issue 237, June 29th 2018), 96 pts
Number #93 On Top 100 Cellar Selections From Wine Enthusiast
"The flagship 2015 Sestina checks in as 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc brought up in 60% new French oak. Gorgeous notes of blackcurrants, black cherries, graphite, wet river rock, and leafy herbs all emerge from this beautifully balanced, fresh, classic wine that's still tight and backward. It's not a blockbuster but has building richness and tannin, as well as a great finish. Give bottles 2-3 years and enjoy over the following 10-15."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2018), 95+ pts
SonVida Malbec is made from 95% Malbec and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon
SonVida Malbec is a single vineyard wine, the supreme expression of the award-winning zone of Altamira, in Argentina's Uco Valley. Altamira's smooth tannins shine through, and the combination of acidity and minerality lead the wine to a long, integrated finish.
"The wine is proud to be ripe and generous. Aromas dominated by smokey mulberry and blueberry. It's plush and coats the palate with bramble, blueberry and liquorice and the scent of vanilla. Immediately muscular and broad-shouldered in the glass, with a savory note, perhaps tapenade, running through the dense palate with mint and dried herbs on the finish. The oak will integrate over time, mixing its spice with the warm spice of fruit. - Joe Fattorini - The Wine Show"
Sunny Summer with moderate nighttime temperatures, followed by an early Fall.
Grapes come from the Mendoza region, in the Paraje Altamira area.
YIELD: 35 Hl/HA
MACERATION: Total 25 days, first cold-soaked 5 days, 14 days fermentation at 24° C, plus 7 additional days. No filtration.
SonVida Malbec can be enjoyed on its own, and matches perfectly with meats, chicken, turkey and hard cheeses. It is enjoyed best in good company. ‘Would you like another glass?’ The answer, almost always, is ‘yes’.
"Former diplomat and journalist David Smith doesn’t make much wine, alas, but the quality is extremely good indeed. Subtle, refreshing and marked by the chalky terroir of Paraje Altamira, it’s a nuanced, skilfully oaked Malbec with precision, focus and impressive palate length. 2020-25"
- Tim Atkin, Argentina Special Report 2018), 93 pts
"A gorgeously rustic, complex wine packed with blossom, dark fruits and Christmas spices. Rich and satisfyingly rounded with soft tannins."- Decanter World Wine Awards 2018, 93 pts - SILVER MEDAL
"The 2015 Malbec has an old-world style in its balance, elegance and smoothness but with the chalky texture of the Altamira soils. It's very harmonious and young, as classic as it gets, medium-bodied and very drinkable. It has developed some extra complexity in the bottle and comes through as complex and layered. Terrific right now. 4,800 bottles were filled in 2017. - Luis Gutiérrez" - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 92 pts
Cueva de las Manos Red Blend is made from 70% Malbec, 29% Bonarda, 1% Cabernet Franc
Opaque in color, this saturated Malbec-led blend exhibits coconut and cola aromas along with fully ripe blackberry notes. This is massive in the mouth, with a solid foundation. Maximum berry expression and a jammy, deep-fruited finish give this power and content beyond its price point.
Avennia Valery Red Blend is made from 86% Merlot and 14% Cabernet Franc
Valery is named for the patron saint of wine in the St. Emilion region that inspired it.
We started with old vine Merlot from a stony block in the heart of the Yakima Valley and added complex, aromatic Cabernet Franc from the Horse Heaven Hills. The result is a balanced, complex wine with the elegance and ethereal perfume that this blend of two of Washington’s best varietals are known for.
The nose on this wine is very perfumed, almost exotic with notes of fresh violets, red plum, winter mint, fresh herbs and crushed limestone qualities. The palate is poised and balanced, with red fruits and mocha powder encapsulated in limestone. The finish lingers delicately, with the Cabernet Franc asserting a light tobacco and herb note, giving depth. A compelling wine that will continue to unwind for 7-10 years in the cellar.
"Brought up in 30% new French oak, the 2016 Valery (70/30 Merlot and Cabernet Franc) offers more black cherry and earthy, herbal notes as well as a medium-bodied, seamless, beautifully balanced style. It too shows a vibrant, fresh, yet concentrated style that has a Bordeaux feel in its weight and texture."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2019), 93 pts
"Good medium-dark red. Aromas of blueberry, mocha, licorice and violet are a bit darker than those of the 2015 version. Dense and penetrating, with wild flavors of dark berries, licorice and game given lift by rocky minerality and a minty nuance. Chris Peterson slightly acidified his Cabernet Franc from Champoux Vineyard, which he added to the wine for richness. This beauty may yet tighten up in the bottle.- Stephen Tanzer"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2018), 92+ pts
Keermont Red Blend 2012 is made from 37% Merlot 29% Cabernet Sauvignon and the remainder Cabernet Franc, Syrah and Malbec
Venetian red in colour, this wine exudes complex aromas of ripe cherry, wild berries, and dusty 'fynbos'. The palate has an array of ripe berries, cherry sherbet, crushed herbs and spices. Elegant but firm tannin affords the wine a long dry succulent finish. Drink 2015-2025.
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.
"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
Perchaud Chablis (half-bottle) is 100 percent Chardonnay.
A classic Chablis with aromas of ripe white fruits and a taste of rich minerals.
The Vineyards The plots are in Chablis located predominantly on the village of Fleys, but also on the common Chichée and Fontenay, their total area is 13 hectares. They are mostly north and north-west oriented. The ground floor is Kimmeridgian marl consisting clay and limestone. The oldest of of the vines is 35 years. Winemaking After a slight settling, the juice is put in stainless tanks to achieve its fermentation both alcoholic and malolactic. Ther is a long aging on lees to refine the flavors and develop complex flavors. If necessary, we make a collage of Bentonite to remove proteins and a passing cold which eliminates tartar crystals. Then we perform a tangential filtration method friendly to the wine. The wine is bottles between 14 and 21 months after the harvest. 2011 Vintage The relatively high temperatures at the end of winter allowed an early bud vines in early March. With a hot, dry spring flower took place in good conditions. In July, a hailstorm located did some damage to our Fourchaume plot. July and early August, rainy and stormy brought the water needed vineyards. The dry and sunny weather of the second half of August brought the grape good maturity. The harvest began on September 2 under clement skies.