Tuesday, September 11, 2012

DGA Wine Club: Hacienda San Martin

Posted by Benson

Hacienda San Martin (2011) is a mix of Bonarda (55%) and Malbec (45%) from Mendoza, Argentina.    The Italian and French grapes take on a distinct flavor and concentration in the high-altitude, desert-like conditions of Mendoza.

Mendoza is known both for the production of olive oil and for wine making.  Wine making is a particularly significant industry of the city, and in fact the region around Mendoza is the largest wine producing area in Latin America.  Argentina is the 5th largest producer of wine in the world, and the Mendoza region accounts for 68 percent of the country's wine production.  Mendoza and the surrounding area is therefore packed with hundreds of wineries which serve to fuel the output of many celebrated vintages as well as a bustling tourism industry.

Hacienda San Martin is produced by the multi-award-winning Andean Vineyards.  Andean Vineyards strives to practice its viticulture in harmony with the natural environment, cultivating each variety of grape at an altitude ideal for its cultivation.  The region, and the vineyard, are known for producing fruit and great concentration but with plenty of bright acidity.

The Wine

Hacienda San Martin is a deep, dark wine with a rich aroma of plum that has just a hint of oak and tobacco.  The wine has a deep flavor with strong notes of ripe black currant, plum, and oak.  It leans toward the full side, which Doug described as "plenty of stuffing."  The flavor tends to evolve on the palate starting with a rush a ripe fruit with a hint of spice and rolling into a long, sweet finish.

Food Pairing

Malbec is a classic wine for steak, and one can certainly enjoy Hacienda San Martin with a nice, dry aged ribeye, but the generous mix of the Italian Bonarda suffuses the wine with a succulence that pairs far better with lamb or pork.  The wine also favors hummus and pairs excellently with either a fresh mozzarella or pretty much any Dr. John recording.