Greetings, Sorry to have missed your travel date to Argentina. In case anyone else needs help with Argentine wines, here is our list and our comments. ALEDM
Carlos Pulenta, Vistalba, Mendoza: www.carlospulentawines.com
Ternera Malbec AP$35/US $9.83
Tomero Malbec 2004 AP$55/US $18.03 in a restaurant Really good
We are told you can get this wine in the States through:
USA Gaucho Imports LLC California Gaucho Imports LLC New York
510 Union St., S. F. CA 94133 252 East 52 St., NY NY 10022
Phone 415-391-1542 Phone 212-753-7521
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail: email@example.com
Andeluna Malbec 2005 AP$30/US $9.83 Excellent
Salentein Malbec 2005 AP$39.89/US$13.07 Very good
Terazzas Malbec 2005 around US$10 Very good
Luigi Bosca, D.O.C. Malbec Single Vineyard (Luján de Cuyo) 2004 AP$85/US $27.86
Trumpeter Malbec 2005 AP$26.39/US $8.65 in the market: very good
Trapiche Malbec AP$53/ US$17.38 Fine
Finca La Linda Malbec AP$55/US$18.03 looked like cherry juice; too light
Famiglia Bianchi Malbec 2005 AP$88/28.85 in a restaurant, AP$39.99/US $13.11 in the store (recommended by the sommelier at Césares)
Enzo Bianchi Gran Cru (blend), San Rafael -- about AP$110/US$36.06 Very good
Maestre de Campo Malbec 2002 AP$66/US$21.69 in a restaurant. Very good
Sophenia Malbec 2006 AP$67/US$21.96 in a restaurant. Very good and ready to drink. It didn't need to open either.
Malma, Malbec Reserva 2004 Bodega NQN AP$30/US $9.83 in the market. Very good wine of the Nuequen region
Ayres de Cafayate, Malbec 2005 (Bodegas Etchart) Salta Very good
A fantastic different white (breaking the Chardonnay habit) is the Viognier from Altas Cumbres. It is not expensive ( I pay $21 reais = ten bucks) and it is fruitty, well-bodied, 14% alcohol. It ihas storng notes of just ripe peach or honeydew melon. I serve it with richer fish dishes (bacalhau), chicken is a very seasoned sauce, spicier pasta dishes, as an opener with a terrine or sliced prosciutto. It is a great contrast to a lightler wine, such as a Sauvignon Blanc (Tarapacá, Chile) or Pinto Grigio (Miolo, Brazil). I have started a meal with the lighter, then moved to the Viognier with great satisfaction.
This is a reasonably priced wine that I drink once a week. For something a bit more expensive, explore the wines of Perdriel, Familia Zucchardi, Doña Paula and Angelica Zapata. Cheers!
Problem is, you can't really get Chilean wines here. A very limited selection from the bigger commercial wineries, and at higher prices then they cost in the U.S. We have price/import protections in place, and with a minimum 50% luxury tax on wines coming in from other places (and for some wines, over 100%!), plus import and distribution costs, they're just prohibitive. That, and the INV, our national wine board, requires a submission of foreign wines, batch by batch, for approval, making the whole process very difficult, so few bother to even try.