Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Bodega Catena Zapata 2011 Malbec, Mendoza

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Malbec is our tried and true friend. When we need a wine that can delight us with rich, juicy flavors, a Malbec from Argentina fills the bill splendidly.

Bodega Catena Zapata specializes in high altitude Malbec. This 2011 vintage is a blend of grapes from four vineyards, ranging in altitude from 3,018 to 4,757 feet. To add to the mystique of this iconic Argentinian wine producer nestled in the foothills of the Andes, owner Nicolas Catena decided on a Mayan-inspired pyramid for his winery building.

The nose on this wine was intense flavors of ripe red fruits. On the palate, the wine seemed rather tight and not as soft and juicy as I would expect. As the wine opened up, there were nice blackberry and cranberry flavors with a trace of vanilla and smoke.

While enjoyable, it didn’t fit the Malbec profile I was hoping for. I want swishy, lush berry flavor from my Malbec. I can appreciate layered flavors, but this seemed too much work to unwrap the layers.

I did purchase four bottles at a nice price. We’ll open another one with a different page on the calendar and a different state of mind and see how it compares. Perhaps my palate wasn’t fully functioning at high altitude.

Rating: 2.5 of 5  Value: 2.5 of 5 based on $18 price

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