In 1941, Argentina embarked on a path to create a pure Malbec wine that would encapsulate the true flavors of the grape. Bodegas Escorihuela Gascon was the first Argentine winery to produce a 100% varietal Malbec wine. From this point on Argentine wine makers discovered the perfect collaboration between Malbec grapes and the Argentine climate, and since then Malbec has become Argentina’s primary production wine.

Argentina develops such phenomenal Malbecs on account of the unique geography and climate that differs from other regions in the world. It just so happens that the ideal conditions for growing Malbec grapes is found in the foothills of Argentina’s Andes Mountains. Mendoza, Argentina produces more Malbec than any other region in the world, and the high altitude districts of Lujan de Cuyo and the Uco Valley, which are located at the Andes foothills of Mendoza, produce some of the highest quality Malbec. These districts are located between 2,800 ft and 5,000ft elevation.

The Mendoza region offers the ideal growing conditions for Malbec grapes, which encourages the grape to flourish and become a better wine. In France, Malbec was grown, as a secondary component to be blended with Bordeaux wines, and this was a result of the French terroir that could not compliment the Malbec grape. The Malbec varietal of France needed more sun and heat, and needed to be grown in the absence of mildew. Mendoza is refereed to as the “desert oasis”, which became the perfect compliment to Malbec grapes. The loose and sandy alluvial soils found in the high altitude create a harsh environment where pests like Phylloxera cannot thrive. The Zonda winds of Argentina produce a dry airflow that pass through Mendoza, which ultimately keeps mildew away. The vineyards are refreshed from the melting snow of the Andes, and rest under the warm sun for a high majority of the year.

As the Malbec varietal improved, winegrowers took the most superior cuttings to proliferate them, designing a purebred Argentine Malbec. Most Argentine Malbec does not need site-specific root variations, because few Phylloxera exist, so traditional Argentine winegrowers believe these Malbecs embody more focused and true characteristics of the Malbec grape.

 

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