Beautiful deep purple color with aromas of red fruits and some oak. Lush and penetrating on the palate with black cherry and cocoa flavors. A hint of sweet oak accompanies the soft tannins on the long finish. This wine shows why the Argentine people are in love with the Malbec grape. Pedro included a small amount of Syrah and Bonarda in the wine for greater complexity and to achieve better balance. Pairs well with a wide range of foods including grilled or roasted beef, spiced or grilled pork, veal, rabbit, medium-strong cheeses, or even meat-based pasta sauces.
BenMarco means "son of Marcos" in Hebrew. Pedro produces his wines as an homage to his father, Marcos who taught him how to plant, tend, and love the vineyards. The grapevine illustrated on the label is modeled after the wide-trellised vines that Pedro has planted on the borders of his vineyards (instead of unattractive fences).
In 1999 Susana Balbo crafted a line of wines to showcase the ripe fruit expression of her sustainably-farmed Mendoza vineyards. The philosophy is a simple one: grow great grapes and make wines that are true to their place. Minimal intervention during the growing season and through harvest allows the true fruit character to develop. Combine this with Susana's winemaking skills and the result is wines that express the powerful fruit flavors, the ripe tannins and the incredible length and balance that can only come from this one place: Mendoza.
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Now fifth in the world for wine production, Argentina is catching up in the quality wine sector. A long time wine producer, Argentina used to make wine in order to drink it, not export it. And so the wines produced were quaffable and rustic and made for the local's everyday dinner. Yet it's hard not to get caught up in the wine market of the world and some winemakers decided it was time for Argentina to show their stuff. Better winemaking technology was brought in, new winemaking techniques were learned and good viticulture practices flourished. The result? World-class wines with unique style and variety.
Unlike its Chilean neighbor, Argentina's vineyards are spread out around the country. The best known region is Mendoza, almost parallel to Santiago to the west. Mendoza contains the sub-regions of Maipu (pronounced MY-pu) and San Rafael. Grape-wise, the most important white is Chardonnay, making wine similar to California's style on the variety. Another fun white grape to try is Torrontes. Almost only grown in Argentina, Torrontes makes wines that are crisp, aromatic and easy-drinking. Some of the best versions of this wine come from the northern region of Salta, with very high altitude vineyards. As for the reds, Cabernet Sauvignon is the main grape for many wines leaving the country, but Malbec, the grape Argentinians like to call their own, makes very distinctive wines that are structured, dense and velvety. Many more varieties happily grow in the country, but for export, and consistent quality, these are the primary grapes.
Young, organically farmed Carmenère at Chile's De Martino estate vineyard
Chile & Argentina are the regions producing the most wine coming out of the continent. The wines from this area are good value with a distinctive taste. They create new world wines with old world character.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.