his blend of Malbec and Pinot Noir is all hand harvested from a single vineyard in Gualtallary. The wine sees some carbonic maceration and has a huge vibrant nose of red fruit, violets, and caramel apple. Good acid lifts the mid-palate with notes of rhubarb, red cherry, orange peel, ash, crushed stone, mushroom, gunpowder, and flint. The 2021 is well balanced with a rich mid-palate and great length on the finish.
Blend: 50% Malbec, 50% Pinot Noir
Gen del Alma is a new project started in 2012 by Gerardo Michelini, of Zorzal, and his wife and winemaker Andrea Mufatto. Gerardo and Andrea have planted vines on their individually owned property adjacent to the Zorzal winery. Their focal concept is to showcase the purity, minerality, and freshness of Gualtallary terroir. Their minimal vinification process allows the fruit to shine on its own. They use concrete eggs, used barrique, and in some cases carbonic maceration in the winery. They currently produce 3 wines: a Bordeaux blend, a MAL/PN partial carbonic, and a CF/ CS/PN blend. The wines have received high praise from the Wine Advocate and Decanter magazine, and we believe GdA is another example of the Michelinis taking Argentine wine to a new level.
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.
With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended red wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged resulting in a wide variety of red wine styles. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a red wine blend variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.
How to Serve Red Wine
A common piece of advice is to serve red wine at “room temperature,” but this suggestion is imprecise. After all, room temperature in January is likely to be quite different than in August, even considering the possible effect of central heating and air conditioning systems. The proper temperature to aim for is 55° F to 60° F for lighter-bodied reds and 60° F to 65° F for fuller-bodied wines.
How Long Does Red Wine Last?
Once opened and re-corked, a bottle stored in a cool, dark environment (like your fridge) will stay fresh and nicely drinkable for a day or two. There are products available that can extend that period by a couple of days. As for unopened bottles, optimal storage means keeping them on their sides in a moderately humid environment at about 57° F. Red wines stored in this manner will stay good – and possibly improve – for anywhere from one year to multiple decades. Assessing how long to hold on to a bottle is a complicated science. If you are planning long-term storage of your reds, seek the advice of a wine professional.