There are three great reasons to try Alamos’ new selections – 2012 torrontes, 2012 cabernet sauvignon and 2011 malbec – that are bursting with flavors that reflect the culture and terror of Argentina.
Torrontes ($13) is the country’s signature white varietal. The Catena family sources these grapes from some of the highest vineyards in the world. The strong mountain sunlight and clean snowmelt water of the Andes gives the wine its dynamic aromatic character and bright citrus flavors.
According to winemaker Felipe Stahlschmidt, the varietal was brought to the country by Spanish Jesuits in the 18th century. Torrontes is found in the world highest vineyards, resting 5,000 to 6,000 feet above sea level.
The result is a wine with surprising jasmine, apricot and peach flavors that compliment light white fish dishes and goat cheese salads.
Alamos’ cabernet sauvignon ($13) grapes suffered in high altitude desert vineyards to produce highly concentrated fruit with exceptional color. Altitudes range from 1,000 feet to around 5,000 feet that brought cool temperatures and cooler, clear sunlight for building flavor.
This full-bodied cabernet shows dark fruit characteristics with herbal notes. Six to nine months in oak barrels produced a sassy wine with brown spice and vanilla.
The crown of this trio is “seleccion” malbec ($20) from Mendoza. Altitudes range from 1,000 feet to 5,000 feet where the foothills rise toward the Andes’ peaks. This terroir helps to make Mendoza the source of Argentina’s stellar reputation for top quality wines.
This dark, lush wine has violet and dark berry aromas that tempt the palate for another sip of chewy plum and blackberry. Oak aging coaxes brown spice and pepper on the finish.
This intense wine pairs beautifully with rich casseroles and grilled steak.