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Vina Alicia Paso de Piedra Malbec 2012

Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina
  • JS90
14.7% ABV
  • JS90
  • RP90
  • RP90
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14.7% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Deep purple in color, with a spicy aroma, plum, raisins, and dark cherry-like flavors. Tannins are soft, velvety, and sweet. Very elegant, full-bodied, and a long finish which shows off its splendor and richness.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 90
James Suckling
Slightly stewed yet comes out fresh and fruity with dried fruits, spice and berry character. Savory finish.
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Vina Alicia

Vina Alicia

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Vina Alicia, Mendoza, Argentina
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Alicia Arizu established Viña Alicia in 1996. With 25 years of research in both viticulture and wine making, she dedicated herself to creating Mendoza's most elegant wines from vineyards that have been in her family for three generations in Mendoza's Lujan de Cuyo. Viña Alicia has two vineyards: San Alberto and Viña Alicia in Lujan de Cuyo. The geographical location, the type of soil, and the regional climate place these vineyards among the most wanted lands of the world. The temperate, Mediterranean climate and scarce rainfalls (180 mm, annual average) add up to the ideal conditions for vine-growing. The soil origin is alluvial and has a loam-silty to sandy texture. Water for irrigation comes from the snow break in the high mountains of the Los Andes mountain range, through a unique irrigation system in the world. All these benefits plus water management according to the actual growing needs in terms of frequency and quantity make Lujan de Cuyo the first viticulture zone in Argentina.

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 originates 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.

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.

SER9121_2012 Item# 142882