Wine: 2009 Punto Final Malbec - this wine has a kickass black label. My camera isn’t dealing well with dark dark colors yet, so there’s no pic
Grapes involved: Malbec, which is apparently a super-close cousin to Merlot, and (so far as I can tell, anyway) almost the only grape they grow in Argentina
Color: deep red, not quite into purple territory
Region: Argentina (Mendoza, maybe)
Label-provided tasting notes: Nothing about taste, but it did tell me that this is unfiltered wine from 50+ year old, low-yield vines. Again, apparently low yield is what you want – torturing grapes makes for good wine. I still think this whole concept seems super emo, but if it means my wine tastes yummy, well, I’ll leave it to the experts.
Food pairing guesses: not sure. Tapas, maybe? It could definitely stand up to red meat, but would overwhelm any fish I can come up with except for cedar-planked salmon (which I am convinced needs a red, but maybe more a Pinot)
First of all, this wine needs to be popped and decanted/poured at least a solid half hour before you’re planning on drinking it. It took 30 minutes from pour to having *any* discernible, worthwhile nose. So plan ahead with this one: this is a wine to pop before you start making dinner, not right when you’re ready to serve.
When it did finally develop a smell, it was a tannic, mineral-y, herbal, woodsy, plummy type smell. I’m not sure this sounds great, but it’s actually nice. The plum smell develops more over time – by the 45 minute point, it’s heavier on the plum and wood and has developed a bit of a peppery bite as well.
Flavor-wise, this has a very tart cranberry note, a plum note, something that tastes woodsy but which doesn’t necessarily mean that I think they aged this in oak (I haven’t the foggiest idea if Malbecs are generally oak-aged), along with lots of pepper and spice and a touch of some sort of purple floral*. And maybe a touch of cherry. The tannins are medium-to-sorta high, the level where they leave a bit of a film on your teeth and make the roof of your mouth non-slippery for a few seconds after swallowing.
The aftertaste is really long, all woodsy plum/cranberry/cherry with a nice warming feeling from the alcohol .
Would I get this again?: Definitely. This is actually my second go-round with the Punto Final Malbec. I had a glass of it at 715 in Lawrence a week or so before I came up with the idea to do this blog, so I knew I liked it but I hadn’t taken the notes down to try to figure out why. When I decided to start blogging wine, I was sort of doing it as an excuse to get a bottle and figure out why I liked it. So anyway, I like it because I like the complexity but don’t feel super overwhelmed by it, either.
*I’m really big into synethesia as a method of describing things, synethesia being the idea that smells and tastes can be described in terms of colors and so on and so forth. Floral flavors are especially prone to get color treatment from me. I’m blaming this on perfume. Every now and then I will smell something and think “that smells yellow” – with wine, apparently I’m prone to tasting and thinking “purple flower” or “white flower” or whatever. Hopefully there’s at least one other perfume-obsessed wine dork out there who will read this and know what I mean. I hope.