Ernesto Catena Animal Natural Vineyards Malbec 2013 $31
I was seduced by the rich, sweet choco-espresso note on the nose and the lift of dried herb and earthy succulence in this little bit of magic from Mendoza, Argentina. It's deliciously balanced and juicy and I love the layers of liquorice, wild pork and pepper and I also just love love love the label! It shouldn't matter, but how cool is this bottle going to look on your table? And how great is it going to taste with rare steak?
Don't fret if you're staring at this wine thinking it's a little less glossy than others. Be happy because winemakers Duncan Forsyth and Anna Riederer haven't fined or filtered it, opting instead to keep the wine in its pure, authentic state. A state of black tea, cherry and mixed-spice intensity. The palate is tightrope balanced, clean, juicy and mouthwatering in terms of texture and length, making it awesome with gremolata crusted lamb racks and mushroom jus.
Also available from bitewine.co.nz for a limited time.
Ocone Piedrosso del Sannio Plutone 2015 $22
Plutone is the name of the grape grown by the good people at Ocone for this wine from the Campagnia region of Italy. It's the first time I've tasted it and I'm loving the fresh, spicy, slap-in-the-face florals of this spunky red. Tangy, lush and leafy, it's got huge vibrancy and life inside. The tannins are sinewy, like those yoga models on Instagram, and they add some chew and grunt to a very good wine. Sip with cold, cured meats. Woof!
For stockists visit artigianoimports.co.nz.