Catena Zapata Malbec Argentino is made from a meticulous vine selection in the best lots of the Catena family’s estate vineyards. These Zapata vines are carefully hand tended and produce extremely low yields. The grapes are micro-fermented in new French oak barriques and the wine is then aged for 24 months in new French oak. This wine is made in very limited quantities.
The Catena Zapata Malbec Argentino 2008 shows a saturated dark violet color; the nose offers cassis, mocha and clove, along with a strong suggestion of soil tones. It combines density and sweetness on the one hand, with gripping, lightly saline flavors of tobacco, dark berries, spices and minerals; a palate-staining finish dominated by sweet black and blue fruits.
De-stemmed, whole berry fruit is hand loaded into 225 liter new French oak barrels; 100% barrel fermented for seamless oak integration; low fermentation temperatures extract intense aromas; all cap management done by hand for soft, gentle flavor and tannin extraction; alcoholic and malolactic fermentation in barrel leaves considerable lees and sediment.
The 2008 vintage shows exceptional levels of concentration and complexity. Climate conditions were exceptionally dry. This caused the physiological ripening of sugars to accelerate but the phenological ripening of polyphenols to slow down. In late January, some precipitation moved in which lowered temperatures and brought the physiological and phenological ripening processes back into synchronization. April has been dry and very cool. The grapes still on the vine are developing very nicely and will be harvested in excellent sanitary conditions, with exceptional levels of concentration and complexity.
Adrianna Vineyard, Gualtallary district 4757 feet elevation
Nicasia vineyard, La Consulta district 3593 feet elevation