In search of finessse

Wine Spectator - by Kim Marcus - December 31, 2018 – January 15, 2019

Kim Marcus' Recommended Wines from Argentina

More than 300 wines were reviewed for this report.

1) BODEGA CATENA ZAPATA Malbec Mendoza - Adrianna Vineyard Fortuna Terrae 2014 - 95 points (Prize u$d 140)

"A big and rich-tasting red, balanced and sumptuous, with concentrated dark currant, olive and dried blackberry flavors."

In the feature article, Kim Marcus suggests that Argentine vintners, having “mastered a big, bold style of Malbec,” are now striving for more elegance in their wines.

He highlights the classic-scoring CATENA ZAPATA Adrianna Vineyard Fortuna Terrae Malbec 2014 (95 points), noting that it “comes from a vineyard planted on rocky, gravel-rich terrain at more than 4,000 feet of altitude at the base of the Andes.” Beyond Malbec, Marcus notes that the top-scoring Chardonnays include CATENA’s “rich and lively” Alta Chardonnay 2016 (91 points).

“Laura Catena, fourth-generation owner and winemaker at Bodega Catena Zapata, among Argentina´s most acclaimed wineries, produced a classic-scoring late-release Malbec from the 2014 vintage that is among the top-rated wines of this report”.

In this report, Marcus recommends in his Top Wine list: CATENA ZAPATA Adrianna Vineyard Fortuna Terrae 2014 – 95 points “A big and rich-tasting red, balanced and sumptuous, with concentrated dark currant, olive and dried blackberry flavors. Chocolate and Asian spice notes fill the powerful finish, which features accents of black licorice.”

In “Argentina’s Chart-Toppers”, Aaron Romano profiles 10 wineries leading the pack with Malbec and more. First on his list is CATENA ZAPATA:

“Nicola Catena planted his first Malbec vineyard in 1902, but it wasn’t until the 1980s that third-generation owner Nicolás Catena Zapata began focusing on planting in Mendoza’s high-elevation sites. Nicolás was also instrumental in the discovery, identification and development of numerous microclimates within Mendoza.

Today, the winery has six estate vineyards ranging from 3,000 to 5,000 feet of elevation. Fourth-generation vintner Laura Catena has furthered the family’s commitment to the discovery of the region, establishing the Catena Institute of Wine in 1995. Since then, the Catenas have conducted extensive research into better understanding Argentina’s terroir.”

BUYING GUIDE

Catena Appellation La Consulta Malbec 2015 – 92 points

“Rich pepper notes accent the well-defined and luscious dark plum, red berry and currant flavors. Notes of hot stone show midpalate, with a fine-grained, mineral-filled finish.”

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