Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Red: Argentina Malbec/Corvina

MASI TUPUNGATO PASSO DOBLE ROSSO 2003, Argentina, 13.5% D, #620880 $14.95

Vintages says of the 2000 vintage (released FEbruary 7, 2004 as #996439): "Referred to by Masi as an 'Experimental Production', the idea is to use 'Argentina's red grape', Malbec and blend it with Veneto's Corvina and a touch of Merlot. Masi gives the Corvina a touch of mat drying (20 days) or as they call it in Spanish, semiappassita (partial drying) then adds it to the already fermented Malbec and Merlot. Replicating the technique they use in Veneto for the production of Ripasso wines, adding the partially dried grapes starts a second fermentation. The result is a finished product with intensified flavours and higher alcohol." Gord Stimmell rates 89 and describes as "opaque red brims with ripe summer plum, black cherries and cedar aromas.... black fruits and vanilla... hint of cocoa powder." My notes: A deep ruby colour with warm plum and black cherry fragrance. Medium-bodied with lots of tannin for cellaring and plum, cherries and a light vanilla. The finish is long with drying notes along with lip-licking value. This is now a General listing.

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