Altos las Hormigas Colonia Las Liebres Bonarda 2015 Front Label
Altos las Hormigas Colonia Las Liebres Bonarda 2015 Front LabelAltos las Hormigas Colonia Las Liebres Bonarda 2015 Front Bottle Shot

Altos las Hormigas Colonia Las Liebres Bonarda 2015

  • RP90
750ML / 13% ABV
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2.8 9 Ratings
750ML / 13% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This wine shows the other side of argentine Bonarda. Showing a typical bright ruby color, but in the nose and palate it has very differential notes. Spicy aromas, with lots of fresh red fruit notes, especially cherries. It has a balanced acidity that makes it fresh and juicy in the mouth, where the red fruits become crispy. The fine tannins provide a long and pleasant finish.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
I had not crossed paths with this wine in a while, so I was looking forward to tasting the 2015 Bonarda Colonia Las Liebres, a sure value and very representative of the grape. It's produced from their own estate vineyards. They aim for a fresher expression of the variety here, with fine-grained tannins, blending grapes from different zones in the province; the grapes are fermented in stainless steel and kept in cement vats, never in contact with oak. 2015 was very warm towards the end of the cycle, and the harvest was 15 days earlier than anticipated. The nose is clean and the palate is soft, a light Bonarda without any oak, a juicy, fresh and easy to drink expression of the variety. It was harvested early and not extracted. The price is almost unbelievable; one to buy by the case. There are four lots of this wine, the first one of 28,434 bottles, but 46,000 liters remain unbottled.
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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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With vineyards tretching along the eastern side of the Andes Mountains from Patagonia in the south to Salta in the north, Argentina is one of the world’s largest and most dynamic wine producing countries—and most important in South America.

Since the late 20th century vineyard investments, improved winery technology and a commitment to innovation have all contributed to the country’s burgeoning image as a producer of great wines at all price points. The climate here is diverse but generally continental and agreeable, with hot, dry summers and cold snowy winters—a positive, as snow melt from the Andes Mountains is used heavily to irrigate vineyards. Grapes very rarely have any difficulty achieving full ripeness.

Argentina’s famous Mendoza region, responsible for more than 70% of Argentina’s wine production, is further divided into several sub-regions, with Luján de Cuyo and the Uco Valley most noteworthy. Red wines dominate here, especially Malbec, the country’s star variety, while Chardonnay is the most successful white.

The province of San Juan is best known for blends of Bonarda and Syrah. Torrontés is a specialty of the La Rioja and Salta regions, the latter of which is also responsible for excellent Malbecs grown at very high elevation.

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"Bonarda is a name given to a handful of distinct grape varieties, mainly growing in [Italy] and in [Argentina]. In [Lombardy]’s Oltrepò Pavese and [Emilia Romagna]’s Colli Piacentini zones, the grape called Bonarda is actually Croatina. In Novara, Bonarda Novarese, often blended with Spanna (Nebbiolo), is actually Uva Rara. DNA profiling shows that most of the Bonarda in Argentina is actually identical to California’s Charbono—and Charbono is actually the Douce Noire grape from Savoie. Somm Secret—Bonarda Piemontese, an aromatic variety, is the only true Bonarda. Before phylloxera, it covered 30% of Piedmontese vineyard acreage."

SRKLHO083_2015 Item# 184102

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