Terrazas de los Andes Grand Malbec 2017
Bright deep ruby. Spectacular aromas of dark berries, espresso, mocha, violet, musky herbs, anise, soy sauce and raw burger. Suave in grain but very backward and minerally; in fact, even tighter than the Grand Cabernet even if it shares that wine's nobility of texture. Intense flavors of blackberry, boysenberry, licorice and violet pastille are given added pungency and definition by chalky minerality. This very dense but tightly wound wine conveys a higher-acid impression than the Cabernet and thus comes across as less sweet. With its chalky energy and tannic spine, its rising, bracing finish is almost painful today. This Malbec should evolve at a snail's pace.
Produced with a blend of Malbec grapes from different locations within Mendoza (Las Compuertas, Paraje Altamira and Los Chacayes), the new 2017 Grand Malbec was nice and pleasant, but as I found with the Chardonnay from this range, it lacked the complexity and depth to justify the price tag. The fruit is ripe without excess, and the oak is nicely integrated, which is an improvement over the wines from the past, but there is still a way to go before we can talk about a "grand" wine. It seems to be on the right track, though.