February 2011 Malbec

Malbec at a glance: velvety black cherry, chocolate, and licorice flavors, smooth but firm tannin. Found in the wines of Cahors France, and shines in Argentina where the wines are varietally labeled. Also being grown in Washington and Oregon.

The wines tasted, discussed and scored were consistent in their scores. Using the 20 point UC Davis score sheet, when rounded to the nearest whole number ranged from 15 to 18. A very tight range with no poor wines in the bunch. Comments included: berry, dark cherry, fruity dark cherry,  plum, smoke, chocolate, licorice, dark fruit, spice, herbs, well balanced, good tannins.

We started with an open discussion with 2 benchmark examples. The Terra Blanc from Washington which was the most expensive and turned out to have the highest marks. The French Malbec from Calhors because that is where this grape was originally grown and still grown today. Malbec is grown with great success and in great quantities in Argentina where most of our tasted wines were vinified.

The conclusion of the group was that Malbec is readily available at reasonable prices and will be on all our shopping lists.

1ST 17.68 Terra Blanca/ 2006 Washington 

Red Mtn

2nd 16.68 High Note /2009 Mendoza 


3rd 16.59 Del Rio/2006 Oregon 

Rouge Val

4th 16.41 Alto Cedro/2009 Mendoza 


5th 15.73 Terrazas/2008 Mendoza 


6th 15.64 Sagelands/2006 Washington 

Waluhka Slopes

7th 15.41 Gascon/2009 Mendoza 


8th 15.36 Cahors Pigmentium/2008 France $11
9th 15.27 Tierra de Luna/2009 Mendoza 


10th 14.68 Vilandes/2008 Mendoza