Viu Manent, Estate Collection Malbec Reserva 2013, Colchagua Valley, Chile
Tasting Note: Just because Chile and Argentina are located next to each other geographically doesn’t mean you can expect similarities in the expression of their respective malbecs, and this malbec proves the point.
The nose of the wine has the familiar hints of green pepper that you also get from carmenere for which Chile is known. Right under the pepper in the nose emerges ripe black fruit.
Even though you know this isn’t Argentinean malbec, your tongue may like mine, expect the familiar Argentinean malbec taste – and like me, you will be surprised. The ripe fruit on the nose follows through with a drier taste than you’d otherwise expect. Perhaps this is what one should expect of Chilean malbec.
This Chilean malbec tastes closer to what you’d expect from a French malbec than a South American malbec because of the dry taste and medium-minus fruitiness. The one area where this malbec does fit the South American taste profile well is with its medium to medium-minus acidity.
This is a malbec worth tasting, if only to get a sense of what Argentina’s neighbors to the west are doing with the grape. Admission: If you had given me this wine blind and told me it was a carmenere, I would tend to agree.
Perhaps all red grapes in Chile want to be carmenere.
Bottle Note: Intensely purple in color. On the nose this wine exhibits notes of blueberry, black cherry and moist soil. In the mouth flavors of freshly-picked boysenberry, raspberry and blackberry give way to notes of sweet spices and sweet mocha, combine a fresh acidity and soft tannins to give a long and balanced finish. Ready to drink now or cellar for up to 3 years.
Importer:Baystate Imports, Avon, Massachusetts
Tasting Date: July 2015