2015 LUCA "OLD VINE" MALBEC UCO VALLEY MENDOZA
Named after her son, "Luca" is the private label of Dr. Laura Catena, fourth generation Argentine vintner, physician and author. She is universally regarded as the "face of Argentine wine" for her active role in studying and promoting the Mendoza wine region and Argentine Malbec. With "Luca," Laura's vision is to take Argentine wine in a new direction, focusing on small-batch production wines of the highest quality with an emphasis on expressing terroir to rival the great wines of the world.
This 100% Malbec comes from old Malbec vines - average 50 years old - planted at 3500 feet in elevation. It was all hand-harvested and aged 12 months in 30% new French and 70% second use French barriques to yield a rich, textured and serious Malbec that outdrinks top Napa Cabs at twice the price. Perfect for fall and winter drinking, this beauty is perfect for wild game dishes, steak, pork, quail, all types of lamb, and strong cheeses. An outstanding value not to be missed. From 50 year old vines plated at 3500 feet in elevation. All hand-harvested, aged 12 months in 30% new French and 70% second use French barriques.
93 points James Suckling: "Very refined, with vibrant red fruit and spice flavors supported by fresh acidity. Lively crushed raspberry notes linger on the rich finish, with dark chocolate accents. Drink now through 2020. 7,000 cases made. This is a really happening malbec with salt, white pepper and dark fruits. Full body, solid core of fruit and a long and intense finish. Drink now."
93 points Vinous Media: "Saturated bright ruby. Lively aromas of blackberry, licorice pastille and violet. Richer, deeper and weightier than the Malbec Paraje Altamira, offering smooth flavors of blackberry, blueberry, violet and dark chocolate. Finishes compellingly sweet, with supple tannins and lingering black fruits and chocolate--and without any loss of focus or energy. Great Malbec for the price--or any price!" (07/2017)
92 points Wine Enthusiast: "Despite humid conditions in Mendoza in 2015, this old vins Malbec shows a fine combination of blackberry, smoke and mocha aromas. It's in tip-top shape on the palate, although the acidity is a bit wiry. Oaky flavors of vanilla and mocha work well with its black cherry and blackberry fruit, which is unwavering on the finish. Drink through 2022." (02/2018)
The malbec vineyards are located in the Uco Valley and in the following areas: Altamira, La Consulta and Gualtallary. The average elevation of the vineyards is 3,150 feet. High-elevation vineyards with very poor soils. Limestone in Altamira and La Consulta. All the vines are ungrafted and average 44 years in age. All work is done by hand including the harvest. Aged 12 months in French oak: 60% new and 40% second-use. No fining and no filtering.
About:Luca is named after Laura Catena's son. The family crest (the McDermott family) that appears in the label’s background is that of Laura’s husband, Dan. Laura is continually inspired by the synthesis of cultures in her own family, and this international inspiration infuses the style and quality of her wines. This is a great example of Mendoza Malbec. Incredible color - could use it in an inkwell! Loads of spice and black cherry cola aromas with notes of cocoa. The berry flavors really pop on the palate as the wine has both good depth and very lively acidity that leads to an incredibly long finish. A bottom note of freshly brewed espresso keeps the mouth watering too. This one is a teenager at the moment, and should age very well (and not talk back when you don’t give it the car keys!). Pairs well with foods such as venison or wild game, steak, pork, quail, all types of lamb, and medium-strong cheeses. A very flexible wine due to its concentration and balance. (Importer)
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