September 2015 Wine Club Selections
The La Compuertas vineyard is located a stone’s throw from the northern end of the Mendoza river. The property has very deep soil, down to nearly 1.8 metres in places, though part of the property is close to a hilly area where the soil is shallower and somewhat rocky.
Ungrafted Malbec vines planted in 1929 enjoy an abundant source of clean, run-off water from the river and a longer ripening season thanks to the region’s cooler temperatures. Over the years, this vineyard has used a Guyot system with narrow rows and low trellises, irrigation provided by furrows running down the slope, a method used by the immigrants who started the industry in our province. This irrigation method brings silt and clay that retain moisture so less irrigation is used.
Terrazas Reserva Malbec 2012 $ 17.99
The 2012 vintage is characterized by a very cold winter followed by extremely high temperatures from late spring to early summer; this lead to an accelerated increase of sugar rate and a decrease of grape weight. Then, temperatures dramatically decreased therefore slowing down the ripening cycle on the vine; as a result 2012 wines are very fruity and aromatic, with an acidity found typically when the end of the summer growing season is cooler.
Food Pairing Notes
Grilled meats such as chicken or turkey. Lamb cooked with wine sauce. Grilled vegetables and red oily fish.
Terrazas Altos del Plata Chardonnay 2013 $ 12.99
Harvest 2013 was one of the most important harvests of the last decades in qualitative terms, thanks to the absence of climate risk factors. It was characterized by cool climate trends, excellent health conditions and scarce rain. Mild temperatures contributed to an extended ripeness and cool nights helped with keeping a great acidity and a right aromatic development.
Golden yellow with greenish highlights. Highly fruity. It reveals typical peach and white fruit notes, as well as tropical aromas such as pineapple and ripe melon. Slight herbal touch and white chocolate notes. Excellent balance between freshness and a touch of oak. Hazelnut and vanilla hints in the finish.
With a 16°C difference between day and night during the summer growing months, the cold nights enable the grapes to lock in all the aromas and flavors the plants produce during the warm daylight hours.
Emmolo Merlot 2012 $ 54.99
This well-balanced and darkly colored wine evokes the scents of saddle leather, coffee and plum, with traces of smokiness amidst its rich fruit. A smooth entry on the palate leads into ripe flavors of plums, prunes and cocoa, balanced by acidity and a grippy tannin character. On the finish: a harmony of fresh earthiness, smoky notes and cocoa’s lingering, inviting warmth. This is one of the best Merlot’s I have had in a long time!
Merlot is a variety that requires hands-on manipulation in the vineyard to make a rich, concentrated wine. Crop thinning throughout the growing season leads to a low yield of rich, concentrated fruit. Grapes are sourced from Emmolo Oak Knoll, which includes two vineyards, one of which r Frank Emmolo purchased in 1972. On an average summer day, Oak Knoll is about 7 degrees cooler than Rutherford, allowing for a longer “hang time” than in warmer areas, which means that they can push the grapes to full ripeness. Harvest came in early to mid-October, and the combination of cooler weather, crop thinning and gravely light soil created ideal conditions for producing a rich, distinctive Merlot.
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com – “Taking a big leap forward, the 2012 Emmolo Merlot has entered the arena of the elite. Rich, lush and generous, yet refined and super well balanced; sweet black fruit flavors; long and lusty from its incredible aromatic nose to is pleasing impact on the palate. Winemaker/owner Jenny Wagner is making a great statement here. How about seared filet mignon over a bed of fresh greens with this baby. Tasty now, but will get substantially better with a half a dozen or more years of bottle age. “
The Wine Advocate – “Although this winery has been around since 1944, I am unfamiliar with its wines. Packaged in an interesting bottle with a label sporting green ink, this 2012 Merlot is made in an explosively rich, blockbuster style. Its opaque purple color is accompanied by oodles of blackcurrant and black cherry fruit intertwined with hints of espresso and chocolate. Full-bodied and super-rich, but not overly extracted or astringent, this beautifully made, full-throttle, pedal-to-the-metal Merlot should win the hearts and minds of many California wine enthusiasts. It is the complete package – from aromatics to an impressive entry, a full, savory mid-palate, and a long finish. Kudos to producer Jenny Wagner.”
Emmolo Sauvignon Blanc 2014 $19.99
With a light straw color, the 2014 vintage opens with the soft aromas of melon and white peach, with an underlying note of pantry spice. On the palate, this wine offers a flinty first impression, evoking the freshness of summer rain hitting pavement. An initial tartness quickly dissipates, yielding to the wine’s minerality. Lean but with a fleshy fruit body, this wine remains dry and maintains interest with a lingering lime citrus finish.