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2010 Nieto Senetiner Malbec Reserva 

Mendoza, Argentina

Retail $14

One of the five classic Bordeaux blending grapes, malbec has not shown anywhere as well as it does in its New World home, Argentina. Original vine cuttings from France were initially introduced into the foothills of the Andes Mountains in the mid-19th century. The Lujan de Cuyo sub-region is situated just south of Mendoza, the most important center of Argentine wine production. Lujan de Cuyo has a moderate climate, and high altitudes and wide variations in daytime and nighttime temperatures allow thin-skinned malbec grapes to ripen slowly. Use of American oak in the fermentation and aging process adds elegance and approachability to the young wine but also bolsters aging potential. It offers aromas of plum and red cherry. On the palate, there's a strong flavor of black currents and the wine leaves lingering notes of chocolate, tobacco and cherry. But the overall impression is light and properly balanced and, like many of the region's malbecs, it exhibits solid overtones of acidity. Decant 30 minutes before serving. Drink it with red meats and game. Buy it at: Hopper's Cartes des Vins. Drink it at: Cafe Adelaide.

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