Pulenta Gran Corte VII 2015
In color, the wine is an attractive, intense red with dark tones. It expresses fruit notes of plum, cherry, and dark fruits, with several spices like thyme, oregano, and black pepper, given by some of the components of the blend, which make the wine delicate and complex. On the palate it is elegant but structured, with a persistent finish making it a wine hard to forget.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Impressive dark fruit in complex, primary mode; the blackberries and cherries are a highlight, as well as cassis and blueberries. The palate has immaculately seamless texture and fruit depth. Opulent flavors are held in astutely crafted tannins. Very long. Very good. A blend of 44 per cent malbec, 25 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 19 per cent merlot, seven per cent petit verdot and five per cent tannat. Drink or hold.
Gran Corte is an assemblage of mostly Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon with some Merlot, Petit Verdot and Tannat, sourced from Agrelo and Los Árboles. Much more than the sum of its parts, it has fine texture, intense flavours of orange zest, blackberry and cassis and balancing acidity.
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.