Malbec Wines from the Chilean valleys

By: Paola Peñafiel

Periodista de Concha y Toro en México

access_time 2019 · 12 · 16

Although lesser-known than our popular Cabernet Sauvignon, this variety is planted in the central valleys of our country achieving high quality wines. We must add that the 2018 vintage has been considered an “extraordinary harvest” with wines that have reached their maximum expression, so you cannot miss out on the Concha and Toro Malbec wines that we will highlight.

When we hear about Malbec we immediately associate it with Argentina, because ever since it arrived in the country in the mid-19th century it has become its flagship wine variety. However, it can be found in several new world countries such as the United States, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and Chile.

This red and noble variety comes from the French region of Cahors in the southern center of the country, where it is known as Auxerrois or Côt, although it is also planted and very popular in other regions of the Gallic country. The name Malbec would have been given in honor of a Hungarian winemaker named Malbeck who introduced the variety in the Bordeaux area.

In Chile, most of the European noble varieties arrived in the 40s and 50s of the 1800s, thanks to the political, cultural and economic openness, and to the interest of the Chilean upper class in Europe and specifically France’s art and wine scene.

Its grape has a thin skin and needs more sun and heat than Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot to grow. Its wines are characterized by being violet, dark, and substantial with abundant tannins. Aromatically it is fruity and expressive, where plum is almost always present. However, its final characteristics will depend on the terroir where it is produced, and if it is a young wine or has months of aging.

Chilean valleys for a great Malbec

For Viña Concha y Toro, the valleys of Colchagua and Maule are the terroirs that best host the Malbec variety since they have the ideal climatic conditions to achieve wines of excellent quality. The Mediterranean climate of these valleys, with a prolonged dry season and clayey soils offer ideal conditions for the development of this variety.

Marques de Casa Concha Malbec comes from the Maule Valley, in particular from Lourdes Vineyard. This vineyard is located in the Pencahue area, between the coast and the Andes mountain range, planted on soft hills that allow excellent exposure to sunlight. These climatic conditions and 18 months of aging, mainly in 5,000-liter fouders and French oak barrels, achieve an elegant and complex wine with multiple layers of aromas.

Marques de Casa Concha Malbec is a deep red wine with a violet hue, firm and smooth tannins, but at the same time, fruity, dense and vibrant. The notes of tart cherries and black plums intermingle with sweet spices and a touch of minerals. 

This exceptional wine goes well with red meat, cheese and vegetables. It will exquisitely compliment assorted cheeses as appetizer, and for the main course, a grilled steak accompanied by potatoes and vegetables.

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Ph: Miss Allie’s Kitchen

From the Colchagua Valley, in the Marchigüe area, you will find the Palo Santo Vineyard and from its grapes, the Gran Reserva Serie Riberas Malbec is produced. This region has a Mediterranean climate with a prolonged dry season and moderate temperatures, and the vineyard extends along slopes and terraces near the south bank of the Tinguiririca River. These climatic conditions, together with 13 months of aging and 10% of Merlot, make this Malbec an intense, deep wine with soft tannins and aromas and flavors of black fruits and plums.

Gran Reserva Series Riberas Malbec will be ideal to accompany red meats, vegetables, rice and pasta. We recommend lasagna Bolognese; it will certainly be an excellent pair.

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The Malbec that already presented its 2018 vintage considered “Extraordinary Harvest” is Casillero Del Diablo Malbec. This wine has months of aging in oak barrels and comes from vineyards in the Central Valley of Chile, a region recognized worldwide for the extraordinary quality of its wines. In addition to its qualities of climate and soil, during the 2017-2018 season there were perfect conditions to achieve maximum expression of the red varieties and their wines. Casillero Del Diablo Malbec 2018 will be ideal option for red meat, such as duck stewed with mashed potatoes. You will not regret it.

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Ph: Nestlé Cocina

They say Malbec is a crowd-pleaser because it is easy to drink. It is a wine of great body and friendly tannins. If you have yet to try a Chilean Malbec, you will be surprised and must try these Concha y Toro wines with your favorite meals.

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