Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Attollo "The Black Wine" Malbec 2010
I had meant to write up the rest of the MR tour but I've got a bit on the plate atm and can't seem to manage that. However, this is such an exciting wine I need to get it out there.
This wine, and indeed Attollo Wines, are a project of Julian Scott, who is also a winemaker at Flametree Estate in Margaret River. We met Julian on our winery tour of Flametree (a post yet to come) and shortening a long story we also stole a few bottles of his Attollo wines to try when we got home.
Malbec is rarely used as the main variety in Australian wines and you'd not often see it go much over 15% of the total volume in blends. They do use it in 'Bordeaux blends' to give a bit more body, complexity and tannin structure. I'm betting it's pretty tricky to make into a varietal when you consider for this wine 1.7t of Malbec grapes resulted in only 560L of wine bottled, which is somewhat a testament to Julian refusing to compromise on wine quality for the sake of volume and selecting only the 3 best barrels.
There are only a few wines each year where I think "wow" when trying them, and this to me is a wow wine.
A blood plum rim is the only hint of colour, otherwise she's as black as the label portends. A very heady nose, not over extracted or alcoholic mind you, but rich like a Belgian chocolate shop. It's very perfumed too, perhaps a bit of lavender in it. It's fruit forward but not at all sweet, and clearly made by blending satsuma plum, blackberry, pomegranate, espresso, nutmeg, and cardamom. In a witches cauldron. Which was recently used for love potions.
I managed to hide the bottle away for another tasting on the second night, and was rewarded for my patience with a bit more of everything above. It almost made up for the chastisement I got from my wife for daring to take it away from her the night before.
The balance is very good, with a long finish.
I'm going to rate it Excellent++ particularly because there are so few wines of such individuality and character, but also because it's just so enjoyable.
If you want to know where to buy this wine, Julian can be contacted here.