Nicolas Catena: Argentina’s Wine Laureate

This morning, I’m driving to the Bodega Catena Zapata, the winery that changed my opinion of Argentine wine. I remember drinking a Catena red wine one night at a friend’s house and guessing that it was Australian Shiraz. My body hummed with contentment as I let myself down into its berry-decadence. I was pleasantly surprised to find out what it was, and started buying more Malbec. Now, as I follow the long gravel road, a space-age stone temple rises from the vines, framed against the Andes silver peaks. This extravagant architectural statement is the concrete gesture of one man’s desire […]

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Best LCBO Wines: Vintages Release August 16

You can access the 79 wines that I reviewed for August 16 as a text wine list with my complete tasting notes, scores, food matches and the stock for each bottle in their closest LCBO stores. You can also see my wine reviews for August 2. You can add my wine picks to their custom shopping list with one click and access that list on their smartphone. This is one of the benefits of becoming a Paid Member. Inventory stock numbers are usually posted online a day or two before the release based on the LCBO doing so. Here are […]

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10 Best Bonarda Wines to Buy Now + 5 Surprising Facts about Bonarda

The most popular Bonarda-based wine in the North American retail market is made in Argentina where it is the second-most planted grape variety, just behind Malbec. You’ll find my most recent Bonarda wine reviews and ratings here. 5 Surprising Facts about Bonarda: 1. Bonarda is a late-ripening grape variety that requires a large shift in temperature from day to night, so that the wine reaches high enough sugar levels without overheating and creating a stewed wine. 2. The Mendoza Valley in Argentina is ideal for creating this climate for the grape and is where the majority of the plantings are. […]

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High on Wine: Argentina and Chile Magic Mountain LCBO Vintages May 10

The wines of Argentina and Chile hit the spotlight in the May 10 LCBO Vintages Release. The premium wine region for Argentina is Mendoza, 650 miles southwest of Buenos Aires. Many of us have only a vague notion of this South American country that’s five times the size of Spain. It spans more than a million square miles from the sub-tropical jungles and parrots in the north, near the equatorial Tropic of Capricorn, to the Antarctic ice fields and penguins of Patagonia in the south. To the east, lie the expansive cattle-grazing grass-fields of the pampas; to the west, the […]

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Torrontes: Argentina’s White Wine Wild Card

By Natalie MacLean Although Argentina made its reputation on Malbec, there are more than a hundred grapes planted in the country, many of them obscure and no longer grown in other wine regions. The weird and the wonderful thrive in this museum of lost grapes: primitivo, bonarda, corvine, mouvedre and especially Torrontes—the most distinguished white wine of Argentina. 5 Surprising Facts about Torrontes: 1. In the past, the country’s warm climate made producing fresh whites difficult. However, modern controlled-temperature fermentation and storage changed that for many white wines, and none more so than torrontes, a crisp, aromatic tumble of daisies, […]

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World Malbec Day Celebrates Argentina’s Flagship Red Wine

Today, April 17, is the fourth annual Malbec World Day (#MalbecWorldDay), celebrating the flagship red grape for the wines of Argentina, as well as a blending grape in Bordeaux and other regions. You’ll find my most reviews and ratings of Malbec Wines here. The Malbec grape produces wines that stylistically fall between Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with more plummy richness and roundness than Cabernet, but firmer tannins and structure than Merlot. Malbec is one of the five grapes in Bordeaux wines, especially in the districts of St. Emilion and Graves. It adds a deep dark red hue and rich dark […]

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