Raise a glass, and toast the Malbec grape in all its glory! Five years strong, Malbec World Day celebrates Malbec wines, with more than 70 events across 54 countries, centered around this year’s theme “Celebrating a Classic”, referring to its seductive aromas and flavors, distinctive expressions from different regions, and widespread popularity. Intense purple in color, this rich wine with its dark fruit, sweet tannins, violet notes, and spice has captivated the world.
Malbec is Argentina’s superstar grape, and rightfully deserves its closeup in the wine world. Malbec World Day, started by Wines of Argentina in 2011, is celebrated on April 17, which marks the day in 1853 that Argentina’s then President Domingo Faustino Sarmiento changed the face of Argentine wine. Assigning a French agriculture expert the task of importing new wine grape vines to Argentina, Malbec was the one that flourished, surpassing even the Malbec wines from France. The grape embraced the Andes’ high altitude vineyards, the intense sun ripening the fruit while the cooler temperatures kept its acidity and intensified its flavor profile. The New World and Old World Malbecs couldn’t be more different. Argentine Malbec is fruit forward, with plump dark fruit, violet flowers, cocoa, leather, and a sweet tobacco finish. French Malbec is the opposite, tart black fruit, tannic, with high acidity, black pepper and spice, leathery in texture, finishing with a savory bitterness on the palate. In fact, very little Malbec is found in France today, with Argentina’s riper version infinitely more popular.
Rutini Wines, founded over 130 years ago, has distinguished itself in recent years, with a major push to quality. Hiring Mariano Di Paola as head winemaker, Rutini has modernized its facilities, and expanded its vineyards. In the quest to make Rutini Argentina’s most prestigious producer, Di Paola has garnered a lot of attention, named one of the top 30 winemakers in the world by Decanter magazine last year. Today, Rutini has become synonymous with premium Malbec wines.
Rutini offers several tiers of wine, with Malbec bottled as a straight varietal or in blends. With something for every budget, Rutini aims to grace your dinner table every night of the week. A duo of 100% Malbec wines, the Encuentro and Trumpeter, offer incredible value, great bang for the buck! The 2013 Rutini Encuentro Malbec is intense and complex. Beautiful in its garnet cloak with violet hues, its seductive nose smells of ripe red and black fruit, heightened by the heady scent of violets. Full bodied, with ripe berry fruit, and accented by hints of dark chocolate, this is a silky wine. Well balanced, with perky acidity and tingly tannins, this is everything Malbec should be, finishing smooth and velvety, at under $20, this is a steal! The 2014 Rutini Trumpeter Malbec is more fruity, with cherry and cinnamon spice on the nose. Medium-full in body, with good acidity, and flavors of berry fruit and plum interlaced with lots of spice, this delightful wine is a crowd pleaser, framed with polished tannins, and a mouth filling finish, all this for just a little over $10, a perfect house wine, especially good for parties! These two wines represent Rutini’s entry level bottlings, with even more complex, intense wines in their lineup.
Argentina is Malbec Central, ground zero for these glorious wines, amazing by the glass and fantastically food friendly, grill up a steak and toast the brilliant destiny of Malbec wines on Malbec World Day!