Origin: Cahors, South West France
Mugshot: A toddler with a magic marker; Inky, often flabby, and quite dense. But when the tone and proportions are just right, few can resist.
Local Haunt: NOT just Argentina.
Saying “good malbecs all come from Argentina” is like saying, “all the best redheads are Dutch”. Just because Holland has the Roodharigendag each September and is all tolerant of Gingers and stuff, that doesn’t mean that Boris Becker wasn’t awesome.
So it is that, while high-grown Mendoza malbecs (hit Uco Valley, if you must) may be amongst the finest in the world, you’ll find some spectacular examples in Chile, France (obvs), Australia, and California.
If fruit-forwardness could be measured in Youtube views, Malbec would be Justin Bieber. It often displays ludicrously dense black plum fruit, blueberry notes, and some savoury smoke and baking spice elements (when oaked). Cooler climate malbecs may displays slightly tarter more acidic red fruit references. Then again, hunting for cool climate Malbecs is like saying you love Metallica – but only their acoustic stuff.