Bodegas Nieto Senetiner Terroir Blend Malbec 2011
We recommend drinking it with:Grilled red meat, pasta with tomato sauces, pork, game birds, locro, spit roasted goat and semi-cured cheese.
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The history of Bodegas Nieto Senetiner dates back to 1888, when Italian immigrants founded the winery and planted the first vineyards in Vistalba, Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza. The company was managed by different families during the first decades of the past century. These families gave the winery an architectural style of the Italian countryside that still remains today.
Nieto Senetiner is one of the oldest wineries in Mendoza’s esteemed Lujan de Cuyo, with estate vineyards in the districts of Vistalba & Agrelo, located at 3,000 – 3,500’ elevation. These areas are some of the oldest and most traditional winemaking regions of Mendoza and were the birthplace of the Malbec quality revolution. Nieto Senetiner's wines, including its signature Nieto Malbec, are expressed via the tradition and vision of its three unique estate vineyard sites, each with distinct characteristics. The soft, supple texture of Vistalba, which is over 100 years old and one of the great heritage vineyards in Argentina, the power and elegance of Agrelo, featuring a unique cool climate Bonarda plantation and the unique concentration and structure of extreme high altitude Alto Agrelo.
In addition to showcasing the particular characteristics of each terroir, Nieto also engages in a creative blending process to to showcase the complexity to which Malbec can aspire.
By far the largest and best-known winemaking province in Argentina, Mendoza is responsible for over 70% of the country’s enological output. Set in the eastern foothills of the Andes Mountains, the climate is dry and continental, presenting relatively few challenges for viticulturists during the growing season. Mendoza, divided into several distinctive sub-regions, including Luján de Cuyo and the Uco Valley, is the source of some of the country’s finest wines.
For many wine lovers, Mendoza is practically synonymous with Malbec. Originally a Bordelaise variety brought to Argentina by the French in the mid-1800s, here it found success and renown that it never knew in its homeland where a finicky climate gives mixed results. Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot and Pinot Noir are all widely planted here as well (and sometimes even blended with each other or Malbec). Mendoza's main white varieties include Chardonnay, Torrontés, Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon.
Known for its big, bold flavors and supple texture, Malbec is most famous for its runaway success in Argentina. However, the variety actually originated in Bordeaux, where it historically contributed color and tannin to blends. After being nearly wiped out by a devastating frost in 1956, it was never significantly replanted, although it continued to flourish under the name Côt in nearby Cahors. A French agronomist who saw great potential for the variety in Mendoza’s hot, high-altitude landscape, brought Malbec to Argentina in 1868. But it did not gain its current reputation as the country's national grape until a surge in popularity in the late 20th century.
In the Glass
Malbec typically expresses deep flavors of blackberry, plum and licorice, appropriately backed by aromas of freshly turned earth and dense, chewy tannins. In warmer, New World regions, such as Mendoza, Malbec will be intensely ripe, and full of fruit and spice. From its homeland in Cahors, its rusticity shines; dusty notes and a beguiling bouquet of violets balance rich, black fruit.
Malbec’s rustic character begs for flavorful dishes, like spicy grilled sausages or the classic cassoulet of France’s Southwest. South American iterations are best enjoyed as they would be in Argentina: with a thick, juicy steak.
If you’re trying to please a crowd, Malbec is generally a safe bet. With its combination of bold flavors and soft tannins, it will appeal to basically anyone who enjoys red wine. Malbec also wins bonus points for affordability, as even the most inexpensive examples are often quite good.