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Kaiken Ultra Malbec 2016

Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina
    14.5% ABV
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    4.3 13 Ratings
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    4.3 13 Ratings
    14.5% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    This deep brilliant red-colored wine with purplish tones displays rich aromas. The nose has interesting spicy and floral notes - a clear expression of a cool year - intertwined with black fruit aromas reminiscent of blueberries and blackberries that show this variety’s great typicity. Good structure and soft tannins call for a second glass. The finish is fresh, complex, and persistent with fruit notes and subtle spicy undertones of rosemary, thyme, and dry flowers.

    Serve at 59°-63°F (15°-17°C) with casserole or not too elaborate red meat dishes or just enjoy with ripe cheese. Store in a cool (<59ºf;><15ºc) and="" dry="" place,="" protected="" from="" direct="" light="" exposure.="">

    Critical Acclaim

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    Kaiken

    Kaiken

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    Kaiken, Mendoza, Argentina
    Image of winery
    The Caiquen is a wild goose from Patagonia that flies across The Andes between Argentina and Chile. By embarking on this cross-border flight the Caiquen takes up a major challenge.

    Just like the Caiquen, Aurelio Montes, founder of the Chilean winery Bodega Montes, made several trips across the Andes until, in 2000 he rediscovered Mendoza as a generous land filled with superb vines and hardworking people. In 2001, he realized Mendoza was the perfect place to make Kaiken Wines, wines that embody everything a great wine ought to be.

    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 is divided into several distinctive sub-regions, including Luján de Cuyo and the Uco Valley—two sources 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 it never could have achieved in its homeland due to its struggle to ripen fully in finicky climates. Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, and Pinot Noir are all widely planted here as well (and often blended with one another. The best white wines are made from Chardonnay, and there are excellent examples to be found as well from 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 originates in Bordeaux, where it historically contributed color and tannin to blends but was susceptible to viticultural problems. After being nearly wiped out by a devastating frost in 1956, it was never significantly replanted, although it did flourish under the name Côt in nearby Cahors. Malbec was brought to Argentina in 1868 by a French agronomist who saw great potential for the variety in Mendoza’s hot, high-altitude landscape, but did not gain its current reputation as the national grape of Argentina until a surge in popularity in the late 20th century thanks to its easy-going drinkability.

    In the Glass

    Malbec typically expresses deep flavors of freshly turned earth, black fruits from berries to plums, and licorice, appropriately backed by dense, chewy tannins. In warmer, New World regions, such as Mendoza, it can be quite intense and often needs time to mellow before becoming drinkable. In the Old World, its rusticity shines, with aged examples showing dusty notes of leather and tobacco. The best examples in all regions often possess a beguiling bouquet of violets.

    Perfect Parings

    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.

    Sommelier Secret

    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.

    YNG280508_2016 Item# 366813