Like a few examples tasted in the past I was happy to see this wine used a diam closure to prevent cork taint and preserve the pleasure one can get from opening a wine in the traditional manner. Maybe it’s slightly irrational on my part – screwcaps are easier to use and are comparatively cheaper for the producer to implement, but I personally take comfort in practising such small rituals.
Flavor Intensity: Medium+
Quality: Very Good
Readiness/Cellaring: Can drink now, potential to cellar
Identity: Argentina / Mendoza / Cabernet Sauvignon
Price: Mid-priced ($12.99)
Long, thin tears
Aromas of blackcurrant, cedar, vanilla
Flavours of blackcurrant, dark cherries, vanilla, spice
Very well balalnced, nice, chewy tannins
Great value for money
Serve at BBQ
‘Etiqueta Blanca’ = White Label
When you consider it’s history Cabernet Sauvignon’s spiritual home has to be Bordeaux, France. Over the course of history it has proven to be a consistent performer and is the praise of enthusiasts and critics around the world. So it’s no surprise that it is also cultivated all around the world to imitate its success, further fuelling the globalisation of wine.
Argentina, bordering Chile, is marked by high altitudes relative to other wine-producing regions. Higher altitudes generally correspond to a marked drop in temperature, and this becomes significant in the northernmost areas closer to the tropics, where it would otherwise be too hot for grape vines to grow properly.
It should also be mentioned that Argentina has earned a reputation for producing high-quality Malbec, another varietal that originates from France, with a similar full-bodied profile to Cabernet Sauvignon.
High tannin and a full body are my preference in red wines, so once again I had to be careful not to let my prejudices cloud my judgement. However I had no problem rating this wine as “Very Good” – it’s a solid example of how Cabernet Sauvignon can be expressed, especially considering the price.
Once again my only complaint is with the marketing tactics and unhelpful terminology, of which this producer is not the only guilty party. “Reserva” has no protected definition in Argentina, so it could mean anything or nothing. “Etiqueta Blanca” or White Label might have some meaning in a narrow context, but I couldn’t find any reference to other coloured labels, as you would with, say, Johnnie Walker.
PS – Not sure if Argentine Cabernet or Malbec are your thing? Get a Personal Wine Consultation to learn your tastes and preferences.
Read more: Rational Wine Experiment – The Vertical Tasting