• Color: Red
  • Grape Parentage: Prunelard x Magdeleine Noire des Charentes
  • Place of Origin: The Lot River Valley (Cahors) in Southwestern France
  • Origin of Grape Name: The name “Malbeck” is attributed to a 19th century doctor who may have introduced the vine into Bordeaux
  • Major Countries of Production:
    • Argentina: 39,304 hectares (Argentina Harvest Report 2015, English Version)
    • France: 6,093 hectares (2011, FranceAgrimer)
      • Lot département: 3,559 ha
      • Gironde département: 595 ha
      • Loir et Cher: 334 ha
  • Synonyms: France: Côt (Cahors and Loire Valley), Auxerrois (Cahors), Pressac (Bordeaux Right Bank), Vesparo, Pied Rouge, Jacobain, Grifforin, Malbeck (the latter is also used in Argentina)
  • Viticultural Characteristics: Thick-Skinned, Early-Budding, Early-Ripening (for a Bordeaux variety), Medium Berry Size, Loose Clusters, Susceptible to Frost and Many Diseases, Resistance to Oidium
  • Preferred Soil Type: various
  • Common Blending Partners: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petit Verdot

Typical Descriptors and Structure for Mendoza Malbec 

  • Visual: Dark Ruby/Purple Color with Blue Tones, Moderate Plus to High Concentration, Electric Pink Rim
  • Aromas/Flavors: Moderate Plus to High Intensity
    • Fruit: Ripe/Lush Black Fruit (Black Raspberry, Black Cherry, Blackberry), Ripe/Lush Blue Fruit (Concord Grape Jam, Blueberry, Plum), Lush Red Fruit (Raspberry Liqueur), Fig, Raisin, Prune
    • Floral: Purple and Red Flowers, Violets, Damson Flowers (floral aromatics are especially expressive in higher altitude wines)
    • Herbal/Green: Malbec may have slight green notes
    • Earth: Moderate Minus to Moderate Minerality, Clay/Mud
    • Oak: Low to High Use of New French and/or American Oak, Vanilla, Baking Spices, Chocolate, Cinnamon

Structure: Dry (with Ripe Attack), Full Body, Elevated Tannin, Diminished to Moderate Acidity, Elevated to High Alcohol

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