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Thursday, April 07, 2011

2009 Valentin Bianchi Malbec

It's been quite a while since I've reviewed a Malbec and it should really be interesting to see if I hold the same impressions that I have had in the last few years. I never really understood where all the "rage" about Malbec was coming from. Yes, I have had my fair share of decent Malbec's, but to be completely honest a lot of them fall short of what I call "really good" wine and even fewer make it on my list of "classic" wines.
Anyways, we'll see how this wine does in the disparagement of my theory.

The 2009 Valentin Bianchi Malbec is composed of 100% Malbec and was aged for 6 months in 2nd and 3rd use American and French oak barrels. The grapes were sourced from vineyards located in San Rafael, Mendoza.

The color of Malbec is typically very dark and almost black at the core of the glass, and this wine is of no exception. It has a very dark purple color with only the slightest variation of a deep red around the rim of the pour.

On the nose I get aromas of creme de cassis liquor, candied and almost synthetic blackberry, black licorice, tar, and some earthy potting soil type notes. It's actually quite a complex bouquet, but I get the slight impression that some of the aromas I'm smelling won't quite translate to beauty on the palate......let's find out shall we!

On the palate the wine immediately impacts the mouth with flavors of black current, pencil lead, oak, and some herbal tones that linger on the mid-palate and finish. The finish is short to medium in length and the wine finishes with a touch of "cheap wine" wood-meets-welch's type thing. Actually as I revisit the wine and as it begins to warm to room temperature, I'm realizing that it's quite thin and somewhat disjointed on the finish. The alcohol spikes a bit and the woody tones are not so impressive.  Oh well, still in search of the under $20 Malbec that makes me smile.... 81 points

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