Category Archives: Malbec

Edgewood Estates 2007 Tradition – Napa Valley, CA

Sterling Vintner’s Collection Meritage 2008 – Central Coast, Sonoma, California

From the label: ‘Our Meritage is a classic blend of Cabernet Sauvignon 57%, Merlot 37%, Cabernet Franc 3%, Petit Verdot 2%, and Malbec 1% from some of California’s best appellations. This richly textured wine has flavors of cherry, chocolate, black raspberry and vanilla, which lead to a full, lingering finish. Enjoy our Meritage with grilled or roasted meats and hearty vegetables.’

Website: http://www.sterlingvineyards.com

This nice Meritage from the Central Coast of California (Sonoma) was a really nice wine. It was my first experience with a Meritage and I found it quite nice.

The color was a deep but clear garnet color and the bouquet was jammy, with hints of vanilla, cherries, and tobacco.

This medium bodied wine had a taste was heavily jammy. I used to wonder what people meant by ‘jammy’ in reviews but trust me once you have a wine that is actually ‘jammy’ you’ll know it immediately. It also tasted slightly of oak.

It had a medium finish. I found this wine to be very enjoyable. I would definitely buy it again. Also, I like to mentioned that this wine was also vinted and bottled at Sterling. I like wines that are produced and bottled at the vineyard they were grown at. I feel it creates a more predictable and dependable wine because the people producing the wine know exactly what to expect from their own grapes.

I give this wine a rating of 86.

Interesting Wine Facts: Fact #1 – Serve at Room Temperature

Here I would like to introduce you to a new series of posts called ‘Interesting Wine Facts’. This is where I will share a few interesting facts that I’ve learned about wines recently. So without further ado here’s fact #1.

FACT #1: Red wine should be served at a temperature of 65 degrees.

Most people have heard that red wine should be served at room temperature and never put in the fridge. The fact is that in the old days in European wine country that was indeed true and for the most part is still true however, ‘room temperature’ there is different then say here in Florida. If I serve my red wine at room temperature you’re going to get a nice hot wine most of the time.

The fact is that it is best to serve wines at their suggested temperature rather than some arbitrary, nondescript instruction of ‘serve at room temperature’. The actual  serving temperature for most red wines is 65 degrees F. If you are in a cooler  climate you probably can achieve that by leaving the wine at ‘room temperature’ but if you’re in a warmer climate it’s perfectly okay to put the bottle in the refrigerator for an hour or so, use a bucket of ice to chill it for 15 to 20 minutes, or any other method to get it to reach its optimal temperature. No one is going to take your head off for doing that especially if they really know their wines.

Trapiche Malbec 2009 – Mendoza, Argentina

Description from back of label:

‘A rich, red-colored wine with violet hues, redolent of plums and cherries.. Round in the mouth with a touch of truffle and vanilla. The ideal wine for empanadas, grilled meat, pasta, spicy cuisine and cheese.’

As of late I’ve been hearing a lot about Malbec wines and when my friend, Camille, challenged me to try one I went out and picked the first one I saw and I’ll confess they were ‘buy one, get one free’ variety at my local grocery store. My logic was that being I know nothing about Malbec this was as good a way as any to pick one.

Being they were the ‘buy one, get one’ variety I picked the same wine but different vintages (2009 & 2010). The one I am reviewing today is a Trapiche Malbec 2009 and it comes from the Argentine region of Mendoza.

When I first opened the wine I noticed how strong the bouquet was. It was almost offensive. The first sip was overly strong and harsh but after literally aerating it with my handy new Rabbit Shower Aerator four times it calmed down a bit…but not much.

The color was a deep, rich, dark, almost inky purplish black. After a bit of contemplating on the bouquet of this wine I decided that there was a strong scent of plums as well as an earthy smell. The taste was very peppery, oaky, and plummy (if that’s indeed a word 🙂 )

My overall feeling for this wine is that it’s too harsh for my liking. I generally prefer a wine that’s a bit smoother than this. BUT…to be fair to Malbecs all over the world I have to say that I have virtually no experience with this type of grape variety so I will be trying other Malbecs in the coming months and comparing them to see what’s usual for this type of wine and what’s not.

Also, I will be taking a wine course next month that hopefully will help me to get so much better at describing these wines for all of you. I feel that my descriptions of the wines are vague sometimes but then that’s what learning is all about, isn’t it?  🙂