Between the seventeenth and the nineteenth centuries, Malbec was the reigning grape in the Bordeaux region of France, when it was replaced by Cabernet Sauvignon. This grape is thin-skinned and needs more sun and heat than either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot. It has strong tannins and the wine produced from it is one of six allowed as a blend in the creation of red Bordeaux wines. It is now primarily grown in Cahors in south-western France where it is known as Côt.
However, in Argentina it reigns as a queen, and is a veritable star, used as a single grape to produce superb varietal wines. This purple colored grape grows at the base of the Andes mountains, where the soil and the climate make for concentrated and rich flavors, producing high quality wines.
World Malbec Day is celebrated on April 17, to commemorate the day when president Domingo Faustino Sarmiento of Argentina officially made it his mission to transform Argentine wine industry. On that day, back in 1853, he tasked Michel Aimé Pouget, a French soil expert, to bring over new vines. Amongst his selection, was Malbec. Sarmiento went on to become president of Argentina and Malbec has become Argentina’s most known varietal.
Malbec wines have blackberry, cherry, plum, black pepper, chocolate aromas, and pair best with spicy dishes, especially with robust red meats!
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