Malbec is a red grape whose home is in south-west France, and specifically in the appellation of Cahors.
There (known as Cot) it makes a strongly flavoured wine which is, all too often, tannic and rustic and needs several years ageing to show its best.
Like Carmenère in Chile, it is much more successful in Argentina than in its homeland. Introduced in the mid 19th century, it is now the star red variety, and nine tenths of all Malbec grown in the country comes from around Mendoza.
What is Malbec like in a glass? Monty Waldin sums it up well in Wines of South America: ‘deep, purple-hued wines which taste of black cherry, damson, raspberry, mulberry and blackcurrant when young, with anise, violet and truffle flavours emerging with age’.
If you want a wine with delicious brambly fruit, but with real stuffing, character and some ageing potential too, look no further.