Altos las Hormigas Clasico Malbec 2017 Front Label
Altos las Hormigas Clasico Malbec 2017 Front LabelAltos las Hormigas Clasico Malbec 2017 Front Bottle Shot

Altos las Hormigas Clasico Malbec 2017

  • D92
  • RP89
750ML / 13% ABV
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3.6 25 Ratings
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3.6 25 Ratings
750ML / 13% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This vintage of the Malbec Clásico is fully representative of Altos Las Hormigas' style -- joyful and fresh. Displaying a bright ruby red color, this wine has a fruity nose of plums and raspberries complemented with herbal notes. The attack shows supple tannins with a balanced acidity that is the secret of the wine's freshness. Notes of crisp red fruits fill the mouth,with a soft texture and a long finish. This is a pleasant wine, ideal to pair with various dishes, from red meats to pasta or grilled vegetables.

Critical Acclaim

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D 92
Decanter
Bright and juicy with a wonderful energy; ripe red and dark forest fruit, a savoury palate with a refreshing fruity finish.
RP 89
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

The young and unoaked 2017 Malbec Clásico was cropped from a transition year between El Niño and La Niña and was produced mainly with grapes from Luján de Cuyo. It fermented in stainless steel with native yeasts and aged in concrete vats for no less than nine months. I find it to be a little grapey and, compared with the 2016s, a little riper. It's fruit-driven and straightforward, juicy and not terribly complex. It has some of the violet aromas and flavors from the variety, with good freshness and tension. There are a number of lots, as they produce a whopping 790,000 bottles of this.

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Altos las Hormigas

Altos las Hormigas

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Altos las Hormigas, South America
Altos las Hormigas Winery Image
Wine from Mendoza is more than just Malbec: it is the reflection of a know-how, a tradition and an origin. Founded in 1995 by a consortium of prominent Italian winemakers, including Alberto Antonini of Antinori and Antonio Morescalchi, Altos Las Hormigas has always been evolving. Their Terroir Project is working towards the creation of an appellation system in Mendoza, while showing Malbec’s diversity of expression according to its origin. Based on this philosophy, their portfolio shows the tremendous versatility of the Malbec, from fresh, fruit driven Mendoza Clásico from Lujan de Cuyo to the structured and mineral Malbec Reserve from the Uco Valley. Along with Malbec, Altos Las Hormigas has been crafting Bonarda for 10 years, Argentina’s second most planted variety. They display its joyful and delicate nature under the classic line Colonia Las Liebres.

In 2012, Altos Las Hormigas took a significant step in their ongoing evolution from boutique value winery to the terroir-driven, serious player in the world of Malbec that they are today. After seeing the potential for wines of consequence in the Uco Valley, the team decided to stop using new oak and small barriques for all of their wines; instead going with older, untoasted, large oak foudres across the board. This decision has allowed for much more expression and elegance, especially on the sublime Appellation series of Malbec, which features the limestone-driven Uco Valley sites of Gualtallary, Altamira, and Vista Flores.

They’ve teamed up over the past decade with Pedro Parra, PhD in Terroir, to use various techniques to find both the ideal sites for their wines as well as a way to measure the ideal ripeness of their fruit. With Parra’s guidance, the team at Altos Las Hormigas has dug over 1,500 soil pits in the Uco Valley, chasing the chalky Mendoza gold that is limestone, which imparts a beautiful minerality to Malbec. In Gualtallary, Altamira, and Vista Flores, they have found the limestone trail, where the vineyards have shallow topsoil and the vines dive deep into the calcareous mother rock. They also use electromagnetism to map out the soil depth of their vineyard sites so that they can avoid picking a whole block where, due to the warm and hilly vineyards of Mendoza, there may be some underripe and overripe grapes in addition to the ideally ripe grapes. Instead, they use that information to harvest in irregular polygons, and pick the fruit with ideal ripeness in every section.

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Uco Valley Wine

Mendoza, Argentina

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With a winning combination of cool weather, high elevation and well-draining alluvial soils, it is no surprise that Mendoza’s Uco Valley is one of the most exciting up-and-coming wine regions in Argentina. Healthy, easy-to-manage vines produce low yields of high-quality fruit, which in turn create flavorful, full-bodied wines with generous acidity.

This is the source of some of the best Malbec in Mendoza, which can range from value-priced to ultra-premium. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Chardonnay also perform well here.

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Celebrated for its bold flavors and supple texture, Malbec has enjoyed runaway success in Argentina since the late 20th century. The grape originated in Bordeaux, France, where it historically contributed color and tannin to blends. A French agronomist, who saw great potential for the variety in Mendoza’s hot, high-altitude landscape, brought Malbec to Argentina in 1868. Somm Secret—If you’re trying to please a crowd, Malbec is generally a safe bet with its combination of dense fruit and soft tannins.

SKRARALH0117_2017 Item# 434727

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