Malbec has risen to fame in Argentina over the past few decades, though it originated in the French region of Bordeaux, where it historically was used to add color and tannin to blends. The variety was brought to Mendoza as far back as the late 19th century, by a French agronomist, who saw the variety’s potential in the hot, high-altitude landscape.
Enrique Foster and Mauricio Lorca, his partner and winemaker, are focused on producing wines that reflect the Argentinian terroir and the qualities that make the area unique. The vineyards are in the center of what is arguably the world’s best location for Malbec, Luján de Cuyo, a region of Mendoza, on the eastern side of the Andes. “Ique” is made solely of Malbec grown in a vineyard located in Lujan de Cuyo, about 900 meters above sea level. The higher elevation helps the grapes maintain acidity, and the vines average more than 30 years in age.
“Ique” is typically released the same year in which the grapes are harvested, and the wine is made to be consumed fresh and young. The grapes are hand harvested, and just 10% of the wine is aged in oak to help preserve the fresh aromas of the grapes. True to the varietal character of Malbec, the wine has dense, bold fruit flavors of dark cherries and blueberries, as well as purple flowers, baking spices, and dried herbs. Medium bodied, the wine shows soft, polished tannins on the finish, along with more notes of dark fruit and hint of chocolate. Try it with white meats, lean red meats, a range of fresh cheeses, or even a bit of chocolate.
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