Wine, Wine Reviews

2015 Toronto Argentine Wine Tasting

Argentine Wine Tasting
Argentine Wine Tasting

Although Argentina is now the fifth wine producing country in the world, the beginnings of the industry go back to the 16th century.

Grapes are not indigenous to the Americas. Spanish clergy accompanying conquistadors brought vines in 1557 and planted the first vineyards in Santiago del Estero.

Up to the 1990’s, Argentine wine production was dominated by a philosophy of “quantity and low price”.
During Soviet times, Argentina exported red wines by the tanker load to the U.S.S.R for very low prices.
At the beginning of 1990’s, European winery owners from Spain, Italy and France decided to invest in Argentina as land prices and labour were low, and profit margins lucrative.

By 1995, quality was significantly better than anyone can remember, and by 2000, exports to the U.S.A and Canada exploded.

The United Kingdom was a lucrative and large market but ranks less important now.

Today, the country’s 1500 wineries export to more than 100 jurisdictions.
The U.S.A is the largest market, followed by Canada, the United Kingdom and several European countries. By and large, rd wines (specially malbec, cabernet sauvignon, and bonarda) represent very good value and are invariably very competitively priced.

In July 24 Argentine winery representatives visited Toronto and poured 88 of their wines for the trade and public.

I tasted 46and recommend the following:

White wines

Alta Chardonnay, 2013, Catena Zapata
$ 39.95

Chardonnay, 2014 Bodega del Desierto
$ 18.55

Chardonnay, 2014, Familia Bianchi
Available at Vintages $ 16.95

Chardonnay, 2014, Pascal Toso
$ 14.95
Available at Vintages October 31

Pinot Grigio, 2014, Santa Julia
$ 10.95 Available at L C B O general list
Opi Chardonnay, 2014, Mascota Vineyards
$ 12.95 Available at L C B O as a general list

Sol Fa Sol Torrontes, 2015, Marcello Pelleriti Wines
Contact Emilia Nahim

Golden Reserve Chardonnay, 2014, Trivento
Special import contact Select Wines and Spirits
Brazos de los Andes White Blend (Chardonnay 50 per cent, Torrontes 40, and Pinot Grigio 10), Familia Zuccardi
$ 13.90
General list available throughout the year

Rose wine

Amaru High Vineyard Torrontes Rose, 2015-07-30
Estimated price $ 13.95 special import

Red wines

Alta Vista Single Vineyard Malbec, 2011, Alta Vista Wines
Estimated price $ 60.00
Contact HHD Imports

Pinot Noir, 2014, Bodega del Desierto
Contact heritage cellars (listed above)

Nicolas Catena Zapata 2009 (Blend of cabernet sauvignon/malbec
$ 110.00

Malbec, 2014, Domaine Bousquet. Organic wine
$ 12.90

Malbec Gand Reserva 2012, Domaine Bousquet
Available November 28 at $ 24.95

Gran Reserva Malbec, 2012, Familia Zuccardi
$ 17.00 Available at Vintages

Finca Piedra Infinita Malbec, 2012, Familia Zuccardi
$ 120.00
Will be available December 15

Q Malbec, 2012, Familia Zuccardi
$ 19.95
Available at Vintages

Barrancas, 2013, Pascual Toso
Selection (Malbec, petit verdot, cabernet franc), 20`11, Marcelo PELLERITI
$ 40.00