2015 Mendoza Malbec
Higher and Higher
Argentine Malbec has surged in popularity with red wine drinkers looking for rich, dark, full-blast flavors - but not all Malbec wines are created equal.
Ace California winemaker Ray Kaufman journeyed to the Andes and went native.Today’s 2015 Adelante Malbec, made from 70 year old vines, is the best to date from this Wine Spies favorite winery. If there is a better sub-$20 Malbec available today, we haven’t found it. This wine is inky, fruit-driven, deeply flavored - and very aromatic.
Today’s Adelante 2015 Malbec Mendoza was born from a single vineyard in the prestigious La Consulta district of Mendoza (which is probably the best place on the planet to grow Malbec). The 70-year-old vines there are farmed with an attention to detail usually seen only at Argentina’s top wineries.
Adelante’s quality is comparable to the best single vineyard Malbecs produced in Argentina today.
Once this wine opens up (decant for optimal results) it is exceptionally fragrant. Aromas transport you straight to Mendoza! Black cherry, blackberry tobacco, dusty bramble, dark spice, plum, hard leather and black pepper provide the initial sensory backbone on the nose. Incredibly rich, for such an inexpensive wine. Flavors of Blackberry compote, black cherry preserve, toasted cherry tobacco leaf, leather, spice box, grilled mission fig, plum and black pepper.
Ray Kaufman’s winemaking career began on various Sonoma county bottling lines in the late 1970’s. From there he worked at Kenwood Vineyards for five years. Ray also picked up some Pinot Noir knowledge by working a couple of harvests at Bouchaine Vineyards.
In 1987 Ray began working as winemaker for Laurel Glen Vineyards. Ray remained in this small winery on top of Sonoma Mountain, making well known and critically acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon until Laurel Glen was sold in 2011. After the sale of the Laurel Glen name and Sonoma Mountain estate, Ray kept working with Laurel Glen founder Patrick Campbell under his Tierra Divina label.
It was at Tierra Divina that Ray fell in love with Malbec and the wines of Argentina. After honing his skills at Divina, Ray started his own Adalente label, where he makes some of the best values in Argentine wines.
Today’s wine is limited and VERY highly recommended.
Enjoy now, cellar some for the next few years. Decant for best results!
Darkest red with an inky center and bright ruby edges.
Black cherry, blackberry tobacco, dusty bramble, dark spice, plum, hard leather and black pepper.
Blackberry compote, black cherry preserve, toasted cherry tobacco leaf, leather, spice box, grilled mission fig, plum and black pepper.
After a dark and dazzling entry, dark flavors cling to the palate forever, fading gradually and slowly drying the cheeks, lips, and tongue. In the end, a softly dry, plush feeling remains… and the palate longs for another flavor-filled sip!
A stack of juicy beef ribs or a thick Porterhouse steak with all the trimmings would be perfect with this gorgeous wine.
What the Winery Says
- Ray Kaufman
- Mendoza, Argentina