Exciting Things Happening In Argentina

Regular readers are familiar with Domaine Bousquet's wines and my affinity for them. Besides their consistent delivery of value up and down the price scale, the company's commitment to organic farming continues to grow, and is reflected in their growing list of certifications, as well as the honesty in every bottle. The most recent batch of samples from Bousquet showcases their expansion and diversification in somewhat experimental ways. There's a sulfite-free line now, a low calorie/low alcohol offering, and a carbonically-macerated malbec, and more on the way.

And while some of these wines offer greater appeal than others, as a whole, they represent early efforts in exciting directions. In addition to being responsive to consumers' emerging desires, there's a willingness to get creative and iterate, tinkering through multiple vintages in pursuit of excellence. Hard not to applaud that, even if some of these bottlings are a work in progress.

Meanwhile, the introduction of new products complements  their robust existing portfolio, which should not be overlooked. There's goodness to be found throughout their offerings, from their Natural Origins boxed wines all the way up to the Gran line, which represent some of the best values in wine anywhere today (which is why I so frequently recommend them to family and friends.) Case in point: I recently had a chance to enjoy the 2019 Domaine Bosquet Gran Malbec Tupungato, which is drinking beautifully, and which I would gladly pay $20 for again. (The 2018 bottling got a much-deserved 93 points a couple of years ago.) 

Their Reserva and Gran lines might be a little more expensive, but absolutely worth it, and are screaming bargains relative to the quality/drinking pleasure they deliver. Following are a few wines from this recent batch of new releases that are from different lines/levels, yet still worth recommending.

NV Charmat Sparkling Rosé $13
Looking for an everyday sparkler to have on hand for those Tuesday night bubble urges? No? Maybe you should be, because this accessible, straightforward crowd-pleaser is an easy way to include sparkling wine as a more regular part of your wine-drinking life. Medium-full bodied with a pleasing, round profile. 

2022 Gaia Malbec Nouveau $20
This is a neat idea - a young wine vinted using carbonic maceration to create a fresh, fun, versatile, everyday wine. Look for generous malbec fruit without the often-present tannic structure and big-boned structure, but bags of crushed violets and hillside herbs. Think in terms of French bistro wine served in refillable carafes at checkered cloth lunch spots. Delicious, fresh, and pure thanks to organic farming practices. Great value, too. Love this!

2020 Gran Cabernet Sauvignon $20
Very handsome packaging. Regal coloring in the glass, nearly opaque, but under the light, you can see it is not cloudy at all. Aromatics come to you gregariously, offering blue and red fruit along with cigar box and dust. On the palate, the winery's signature red wine profile stands in spotlight: purity of fruit, elegant structure, balance, and everything it needs to benefit from a decade or more in the cellar. Extraordinarily consistent vintage to vintage, there is very little risk in reaching for this top-tier cab from this high altitude producer. 85% cabernet, 15% malbec