News - 22.02.12
Argentina Wine Awards 2012 has just begun
With a great expectation, one of the most important wine tastings is held in Mendoza, Argentina, which announced the world’s best Argentine wines. In this article, some winemakers give their first perceptions.
Argentina Wine Awards, the annual wine contest conducted by Wines of Argentina and COVIAR, lets the world know about the best Argentine wines. In its 2012 edition, in which 773 samples were submitted, the tasting takes place from February 19 to 23 at the Diplomatic hotel, in Mendoza.
In this opportunity, the twelve top winemakers assessing the participating wine samples are: Michael Silacci (United States), Joey Tensley (United States), Gilles Paquet (France), Marlene Soria (France), Alastair Maling (New Zealand), Barbara Tamburini (Italy), Graziana Grassini (Italy), Vittorio Fiore (Italy), Anthony Hamilton Russell (South Africa), Andrea Mullinex (South Africa), Marcelo Retamal (Chile) and Robert Pepi (United States).
Malbec, the star grape
One of the famous personalities is Michael Silacci, Opus One’s winemaker, one of the top wines in the United States. According to what he said, Malbec is not an unknown variety for him, as this grape was used to make the Opus One in 1994. For that reason, WineSur asked him if he agreed with the vision that Malbec has found its better terroir in Argentina, to which he answered: “Yes, I highly respect and appreciate Malbec made in Argentina.”
On the other hand, winemaker Barbara Tamburini highlighted: “Certainly, one of the most known and important wines in the oenological production from Argentina is Malbec. In my opinion, it means that there are no reasons to modify this address.”
However, she pointed out that “Torrontés is a grape variety that has a very good possibility to produce very fresh and fruity white wines. Therefore, it can have success in many international markets.”
In addition, Italian winemaker Graziana Grassini, specialist in Syrah and who owns a laboratory of Agricultural and Environmental Analysis, commented: “Malbec has found its natural habitat in many regions in Argentina, so winemakers manage to express its best organoleptic features. In terms of winemaking, Malbec from Argentina is better developed than the one yielded in Italy. It is difficult to determine exactly what characteristics suit it better, because I have never made wine in Argentina, just in Italy.”
For his part, Italian winemaker Vittorio Fiore explained: “I believe it is a wine with great quality potential, capable of gaining a prominent position in the international winemaking”. Likewise, he said that Argentine wines match up to Italian consumers’ palates. “Their taste has significantly evolved in recent decades, and they are also interested in proposals coming from different wine growing areas of the world.”
Finally, he added: “Since few years, white wine consumption has undergone a significant development. Specifically, consumers prefer fresh and fruity white wines rather than those made in barrels. Therefore, surely Argentine Torrontés can be successful in the International market.”