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Malbec traces its origins, like so many others, to the Bordeaux region of France, where it descended from two enigmatic French grapes—Magdeleine Noire des Charentes and Prunelard. It is one of the five red grapes that can be blended to produce red Bordeaux, but in modern times it’s percentage in the blend has significantly decreased and sometimes commonly omitted entirely. This is due to the vine’s sensitivity to frost, which is not ideal in Bordeaux’s maritime climate. In its native region, Malbec plantings have been steadily declining for some time now. Varietal Malbec is celebrated for its soft mouthfeel, rich plum and earthy flavors, and alluring inky, dark color.
Seeing the success of Malbec in neighboring Argentina long ago inspired the winemakers in Chile to plant their own vines. Cuttings were brought over from France in the early 1900s and first planted in Chile’s central valley. Initially, the Malbec produced in Chile was considered to be poor quality, as bulk production was the focus rather than a refined process technique. Over the last several decades, however, Chilean Malbec has come into its own, and is now considered an exquisite alternative to the more dominant Argentine varietal. Rather than the concentrated, fleshy character seen from Argentina, Chilean Malbec tends to be lighter and fresher, with higher acidity and floral expression.
Our Chile Malbec is characterized by dark fruit flavors of blackberry and black cherry supported by a moderate oak presence. A dry red wine sporting a medium-full body and conspicuous alcohol level of 13% by volume. The Malbec wine kit includes medium toast American oak chips. Medium toast oak is the most popular toast level used in red wines as it imparts a complex balance of vanillin and spice.
The VineCo Estate Malbec should be the first thing you grab when the flames on the grill go out. This full-bodied wine is the perfect companion for lean red meat, pork, or dark meat poultry. When you cut into that juicy filet, what better reward for a medium-rare job done well than a not-so-medium pour of Malbec? When you bring the glass up for a sip, the deep inky appearance may fool you into thinking your sunglasses are still on. Sitting back to admire the dark abyss held within your stemware may reveal your future. Hint: it’s probably another glass (or another bottle) of heavenly Malbec.