Luca is the personal project of Renaissance woman Laura Catena, M.D."
Luca Pinot Noir 2009
Pinot Noir from Argentina, South America
Beautiful garnet color with aromas of wild strawberries, saddle leather and cola root. A complex Pinot with notes of leather, spice, and cherry/raspberry confiture on the palate. Amazing aroma and finishes with an enjoyable Burgundian bent.
Pairs well with foods such as lamb chops, grilled salmon, roasted duck or chicken, and game birds. Pinot lovers may just go ahead and drink it all by itself!
The Wine Advocate - "Catena has again hit a home run with her 2009 Pinot Noir (as she did in 2006, 2007, and 2008). There is very little Pinot Noir in Mendoza (Patagonia is the principal hope for Argentina Pinot Noir) so this streak is particularly impressive. The grapes are sourced from a relatively young vineyard at 4700 feet of elevation. The wine was aged for 12 months in 30% new oak and bottled without fining or filtration. Medium ruby in color, it offers up an alluring bouquet of cherry blossom, strawberry, raspberry, smoke, and incense. Velvety-textured with silky, layered fruit, complex flavors, and a lingering finish, this superb value (for Pinot Noir) will provide pleasure for another 6-8 years if not longer.
Laura Catena is a fourth generation winemaker who grew up in a traditional Argentine-Italian winemaking family in Mendoza. Laura splits her time between Mendoza and San Francisco, California, where she is an emergency physician, university professor and occasional tango dancer. Laura had the vision of creating a new breed of Argentine wines: small quantities, artisan quality, and true to their individual terroirs. A pioneer of small-grower relations in Mendoza, Laura's incredible, limited production wines come from some of Argentina's best fruit from low-yield, high-elevation, family-owned vineyards. The wines are named after her children - Luca, Dante and Nicola - and the background of the label is the McDermott coat of arms of her American husband, Daniel McDermott. View all Luca Wines
Notable FactsUnlike 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.
About South AmericaRelated Links:
Young, organically farmed Carmenère at Chile's De Martino estate vineyard
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost 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 & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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