Tonight I have a special treat, a Snooth virtual tasting of wines from the Dona Paula Estate in Argentina! I really have to offer a special word of appreciation and a hearty thank you to Snooth and Dona Paula Estate for providing me with some lovely samples to try this evening, the 2011 Torrontes (which I posted about yesterday) and the 2011 Malbec! Now I'll admit that I have not been the biggest fan of Malbec, though I think this is in part because of the recent surge in popularity of Malbec that resulted in a wave of imports that were not exactly the highest quality. This one gives me some hope as it's a classic from the Uco Valley of Mendoza, so here's to hopefully trying Malbec with a new outlook!
The wine itself has a deep purple color and nice clarity in the glass. The nose is classic Malbec, rich ripe red fruit, blackberries, cherries and plums, offset with distinct earthy tones of green grass, forest floor and some dusty granite. The taste is quite remarkable, with some dark fruit up front, followed by some lovely spice notes midpalate, anise, mint and leather. The finish is wonderful, as the firm tannins and balanced acidity provide ample support for the velvety mouthfeel and long, dry finish.
Overall I would rate this wine a solid 8, as it's a really wonderful example of what a good Mendoza Malbec should be, ample black fruit and a lovely rustic earthiness that begs for a big hunk of meat! Since I'm tasting tonight, I am enjoying this one with a simple plate of antipasti, but it would be perfect with a big rare grilled Angus steak and some fresh veggies, just like you might enjoy in the Andes of northern Argentina. So if you can grab a bottle, enjoy it with dinner tonight!