Mendoza Malbec Clásico

Luján de Cuyo

Altos Las Hormigas

Altos Las Hormigas is based in Luján de Cuyo, the only officially recognised...

appellation within Mendoza and one of the region's premium vine growing areas. The estate is known as a Malbec specialist with a reputation as one of the country's top five producers of this particular variety. Alberto Antonini and fellow Tuscan, Antonio Morescalchi, were so impressed with the vineyards in the area around Mendoza, following their first trip to Argentina in 1995, that they persuaded a few friends to join with them in buying this estate. The estate covers 88 hectares with 56 in production.

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Vineyards

The grapes come from vineyards in Medrano, Barrancas and Lulunta in Mendoza, situated at 900 -1,000m above sea level. The sites are chosen for their deep, fresh sandy loam soils that delay ripening and avoid hydric stress. The climate here is semi-desert with hot days and cool nights which help the aromatic development of the grapes. The yield was 11 tonnes per hectare.

Vintage Information

The season began with severe frosts that lowered yields by 30%. November brought a few dry Zonda winds that challenged the flowering stage and lowered yields even more. December and January brought heatwaves, and late summer rains lowered temperatures in the region just before harvest. In three weeks the region received levels equivalent to two years' worth of rain; therefore grapes harvested prior to mildew or rot setting in were showing admirable levels of acidity, lower alcohol content and fine tannins.

Vinification

Grapes from different vineyards were vinified separately before the final blend was assembled. After a careful, double sorting process, the grapes were softly pressed and fermented with indigenous yeasts in order to express each of the selected vineyards. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks between 24-28°C for 10 days. The must was pumped over up to three times a day for extraction, with two rack-and-returns. The wine was then aged for 10 months in concrete piletas.

Tasting Notes

Deep ruby with a hint of blue on the rim. This wine has a nose with traditional notes of fresh plums, cherries, and chocolate cake but surprises with hints of banana and passion fruit. Super fine tannins and balanced acidity frame a palate of plum, blueberry and white pepper nuances.

Vintage Information

Vintage 2014
Grape varieties 100% Malbec
Region Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza
Winemaker Alberto Antonini / Attilio Pagli / Leonardo Erazo
Alcohol (ABV) 13.5%
Acidity 5.15g/l
Residual Sugar 1.8g/l
Wine pH 3.85