Recently, the good PR folks from The Wines of Chile (@RobBralow) sent me a surprise box of wine samples. In this box, held a treat for the sense, and an 89 pointer. Ok fine, really it was 88 points by the Spectator but it was voted a Best Buy.
The 2006 ViuSecretoMalbec hails from the Colchagua Valley region of Chile. The Colchagua Valley lies about 80 miles southwest of Santiago, and has a moderate climate. It has often been compared to Napa in many ways, but I bet you won't find a NapaMalbec at this price point!
This Malbec is priced at a fighting $10-15, and is worth every penny in my opinion. I immediately smell a smokey richness, with fennel and herbs. It is a rich and chewy wine, which one would expect in the over $20 category, but is a treat at this price point. On the palate, there is heavy plum and herb, with an earthy richness. I also taste lavendar and a nice pepper overtone.
Chile has become my go to region for budget minded wines. I have personally tasted several Cabernet blends that are priced around $10 and are a STEAL. Particular varietals that do well in Chile are Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and SauvingnonBlanc. I'm still exploring other varietals, so please stay tuned!
Wine graveyards are littered with 89-rated bottles, but some just might deserve a chance to come back from the dead. What is the difference between an 89 and a 90 rating for a bottle of wine? Sales. A reasonably priced 90 rating flies off the shelf. An 89 rating for the same dollars just sits and sits. The 89 Project invites wine writers, reviewers, critics and bloggers to cross-post anything they write about any wine getting an 89 rating. Let us give these red-headed step children of the wine world a second chance to shine brightly with success, or splat down into ignominious failure.