Altos Las Hormigas Appellation Gualtallary Malbec 2018

£39.99

“The site-specific 2018 Malbec Appellation Gualtallary comes from specific soils, two plots that they believe transmit the maximum expression of limestone to Malbec, giving a structured wine with fine-grained tannins but a little wild. The vines are on stony and gravelly soils with a high percentage of limestone and sand with around 3% clay at 1,300 meters in altitude. The grapes fermented in small concrete vats with indigenous yeasts at some 25 degrees Celsius for 15 days. It matured in untoasted 3,500-liter French oak foudres for 18 months and no less than 12 months in bottle. This comes from sandy soils and very low yields that give it chalkier tannins and a savage way. This has a slightly rustic touch, vertical and with some lightness. There’s always a fresh touch of aromatic herbs (thyme and rockrose), with a textured palate and very tasty and clean flavors in the finish. 20,600 bottles were filled in September 2019. Drink: 2021-2030. 97 points

Altos Las Hormigas is the Italian-Chilean project of Antonio Morescalchi, Alberto Antonini, Attilio Pagli, Pedro Parra, Albert Cussen, Pedro Donoso and Patricio Bustamante in the heart of Mendoza, initially in Luján de Cuyo where they have the winery and 211 hectares of land where they planted 47 hectares of Malbec between 1996 and 2012 and a further six hectares of Bonarda planted in 2007. They later planted 54 hectares in Altamira in Valle de Uco, mostly Malbec with some Bonarda and Semillon to keep the biodiversity, following what they learn from Alan York and Gianfranco Soldera. They harvested the first grapes from Jardín de Altamira in 2020. Their vineyards are certified organic, but they also source grapes from other growers to produce around 800,000 bottles per year. They have also changed their resident winemaker, as Leo Erazo went back to Chile to focus on his own personal project. So, for the 2020 harvest, they hired a young Argentinean winemaker called Federico Gambetta.”

Luis Gutierrez, Wine Advocate (03/21)

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