2007 Single Vineyard Old Vine Malbec
Malbec • La Rosa Vineyard, D.O Sagrada Familia
Chile: Curicó Valley
What we say
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Mission Codename: Viva Curicó
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Infiltrate Valdivieso, one of Chile’s preeminent wine producers, and return with one of their famous single vineyard wines for our variety-loving Operatives
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Viña Valdivieso
Wine Subject: 2007 Single Vineyard Old Vine Malbec – Valle de Curicó
Winemaker: Brett Jackson Powell
Backgrounder: Chile’s Central Valley, which is the country’s most productive wine growing region in the country, is comprised of four sub-regions: the Maipo Valley, the Rapel Valley, the Maule Valley and the Curicó Valley, which is where today’s wine comes from. Curicó is best known for Chardonnay, but it also produces other spectacular red and white wine varietals, including fantastic Malbec. Made from vines planted in 1920, today’s Malbec is a superior example of the varietal.
Malbec grapes tend to have an inky dark color and robust tannins, and are long known as one of the six grapes allowed in the blend of red Bordeaux wine. The French plantations of Malbec are now found primarily in Cahors in the South West France region. It is increasingly celebrated as an Argentine and Chilean varietal wine.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Brilliant dark ruby hues, with a solid core of darker, clear ruby. After a hearty swirl, wine-stained tears steak down the glass to the surface below.
Smell – Bold and lush with overripe blackberry, blueberry and stewed plum. These are underpinned by dark chocolate, cherry and dried dark rose petals.
Feel – Round, fresh, lively and light-weight on the attack, plush and soft across the mid. After a few moments, a crushed velvet dryness spreads from the rear palate, forward, leaving a soft, chalky mineral feel as it dries.
Taste – Medium in intensity, with balanced red and black fruit and earthen, herbal and meaty notes. The wine leads with concentrated black cherry, blackberry, lightly singed blueberry cobbler and overripe raspberry. These mingle with earthy dark dried flower petals, dark minerals, smoked meats and exotic spices.
Finish – Medium long and dynamic, with bright flavors that transmute to darker flavors – and then, intriguingly, back to bright, again. This dynamic finish is supported, in the end, by a terrific minerality.
Conclusion – I love this wine. And I find Malbec to be a very challenging varietal to love. In my case, I either love it or I do not. And so it is that with today’s wine I approached with caution. Immediately, though, my reservations were put to rest. Blown away, in fact. This 2007 Viña Valdivieso Single Vineyard Old Vine Malbec is a very approachable, very enjoyable wine. Gorgeous aromatics foretell the flavors to come. Flavors are bold, bright and delicious, with a great feel and plenty of acidity, making the wine a great food wine. Pair with a spicy pasta or spicy grilled steak. If you manage to get your hands on this 2007, keep a few bottles to compare with the 2008 – which we are certain to feature when it is released in the US in the coming months.
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of the Valle de Curicó can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the winery says
About This Wine:
Colour: Attractive vibrant dark violet-red.
Nose: Intense wild berry fruits, fresh blackberries, blueberries, with a lovely lifted floral character.
Palate: Intense exotic flavours with firm tannins that gives structure and length. This is well complemented with a fresh feel from the acidity, which balances the fruity character of the wine.
Ageing Recommendations: Enjoy the concentration now or cellar for up to 7 years.
Winemaking Process: Careful hand selection. Bunches were gently de-stemmed. Fermentation was in stainless steel tanks and lasts between 7 to 10 days. During fermentation the must was pumped over the skin cap three times a day. After alcoholic fermentation, there was post-fermentation maceration on skins between7 to 14 days, before pressing. The wine was aged for 12 to 18 months in French (100%) oak barrels of which 35%were new barrels.
Vineyard: The fruit was sourced from the ‘La Rosa Vineyard’ in Sagrada Familia, Lontue Valley. Vineyards were planted in 1920. The character of these old vines is clearly reflected in the wine with concentrated flavours and textures. This vineyard is situated in a small valleynestled into the coastal ranges. North facing and protected from the cooling breezes, whichflow up and down the Mataquito river, it is a very warm site. The intense heat experiencedhere during the summer allows the full development of the unique Malbec aromas andflavours.
Food Pairing: Valdivieso Malbec Single Vineyard pairs with red meats with spicy sauces, served withgrilled sliced potatoes with spices. Barbequed lamb, pork or game are excellent too. Serve at17°C.
About The Winery:
Viña Valdivieso dates back to 1879 when Alberto Valdivieso founded Champagne Valdivieso, the first company in Chile and South America to make sparkling wine. More than a hundred years later in the late 1980s, the company expanded in a new direction when it began commercial production of still wines, as Viña Valdivieso, in our Curicó Valley winery in Lontué.
Valdivieso wines have since had a very successful career, triumphing in major world markets and achieving the highest honours in international competitions. These achievements are not an objective in themselves, but rather the result of the search for superior quality wines that are both distinctive and attractive.
Philosophy: Producing quality wines requires careful and balanced management in every stage of the winemaking process. We place tremendous emphasis on our efforts in the vineyards to ensure the best grapes, which is a determining factor in the quality and distinctive character of each wine.
In the winery, we conserve the qualities of the grapes by intervening as little as possible during the vinification process in order to avoid any loss of concentration or complexity. Our basic rule for barrel-aged wines is that the contribution of the oak should complement and reinforce the characteristics of the fruit and never hide or overwhelm it.
Appellation: D.O Sagrada Familia, Valle de Curicó
Varietal: 100% Malbec