Pulenta Gran Corte VII 2014
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A sexy and pretty red with dark berries such as blackberries and blueberries. Hints of hot stones, too. Full-bodied, tight and focused with fantastic depth of fruit and polished tannins. A sophisticated blend with structure and finesse. Made up of 36% malbec, 25% cabernet sauvignon, 18% merlot, 12% petit verdot and 9% tannat.
The Pulenta family has been a prominent and respected force in Argentine viticulture for three generations. Sons of well-known winegrower Antonio Pulenta, and descendants of Italian immigrants, Eduardo and Hugo Pulenta founded Pulenta Estate in 2002. The vineyards are estate-owned and farmed for high quality and limited yields. Their extensive holdings in the Agrelo area of Lujan de Cuyo have allowed them to create a broad portfolio that includes sauvignon blanc, pinot gris, chardonnay and malbec rose; merlot, cabernet franc, malbec and cabernet sauvignon in several tiers and even a late harvest red blend.
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 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. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a 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.