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Latest Entry: A visit to Andeluna Cellars, Uco Valley, Mendoza - 19th April 2012
During a recent visit to Mendoza, I took a few days to drive down to the Uco Valley and drop into one of our favourite producers in the area, Andeluna Cellars; situated in the foothills of the Andes at the base of Mt. Tupungato, Andeluna is a true Argentinean star in the making. The estate vineyards originally belonged to Rutini (another famous Argentinean winemaking dynasty) and Andeluna was born in 2003 as a joint venture with H. Ward Lay, an American businessman. Investment in the winery and consultation from Michel Rolland, combined with an excellent location has led to the estate gaining many awards in international competition most notably a clutch of International and Regional Trophies at the Decanter World Wine Awards. I had a fascinating tour of the vineyards (which use a drip irrigation system utilising snow melt from the Andes) and winery followed by a stunning 6 course lunch prepared by Chef Bruno Zerhau and complemented by wines from the estate.
Andeluna 2011 Torrontes, Tunpungato, Mendoza (£10.99 btl)
"Unusual to see this varietal in Mendoza - most is grown further north in Cafayate. Lovely, lifted elderflower and grape aromatics on the nose and a whiff of stony minerals; all about texture and weight on the palate while remaining crisp and refreshing, a more serious style of Torrontes than many I have tried while in Argentina."
Andeluna Malbec 2009, Tupungato, Mendoza (2010 vintage - £10.99 btl)
"Rich nose of velvety bramble fruits, very defined, warm and inviting; lovely luxuriously dense palate of violets, plums and blackcurrant with silky tannins - glorious mouth feel here."
Andeluna Grande Reserve Pasionado 2005, Tupungato, Mendoza (£27.99 btl)
"A blend of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cab Franc. Ripe developing fruit and complex aromatics here - spice and some oak aromas alongside anise; mocha and chocolate notes complement the fruit on the palate. Good weight and density, this manages to be fresh and has aged very nicely showing some elegance now. Very refined and classy."
Andeluna Grande Reserve Cabernet Franc 2007, Tupungato, Mendoza (£27.99 btl)
"Very classy nose offering high quality fruit with perfect ripeness and herbal aromatic complexity; the quality of the tannins on the palate is superb - velvety and chock full of gorgeous fruit, this remains elegant, balanced and fresh and has extraordinary length. Nuances of complex flavour on the finish."