Terrazas des Los Andes Cheval Des Andes 2008
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|Main Vine||Malbec / Auxerrois / Cot|
Grapes : 60% Malbec (from 74 year old vines) 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% blend of Merlot and Petit Verdot.
Vintage : 2008
Bottle : 75 cl
Cheval des Andes is a joint venture between top French producer Cheval Blanc and Argentinean producer Terrazaz de los Andes based around a 38 hectare estate in Lujan du Cuyo (within Mendoza) Argentina. Since the first vintage of Cheval des Andes was produced in 1999, the blend of grapes that make up this wine has varied each year, although the blend is typically primarily Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon-based. Following hand harvesting across March and April, the grapes destined for this 2007 Cheval des Andes were vinified prior to spending 15-18 months maturing in new French oak. Bottling was carried out after this 2007 Cheval des Andes had been fined with egg whites, a nod to Cheval Blanc’s Bordeaux origins. In the glass, this 2007 Cheval des Andes is an impenetrable ruby hue. A slight ochre discolouration towards the rim hints at the oak maturation experienced by this wine, and the obvious legs when this 2007 Cheval des Andes is swirled show the 14% abv contained within. Pronounced on the nose, this 2007 Cheval des Andes is dark and brooding. Despite Malbec forming the majority of this 2007 Cheval des Andes release, it is the Cabernet Sauvignon component that seems to lead, with aromas of dark cherry and blackberry fruit first out of the glass. Malbec’s typical plum personality follows, along with a pepper spice lent to the blend by Petit Verdot and oak. Still concentrated and uptight with a deep ingraining of oak, it is clear that this 2007 Cheval des Andes potentially has a long future ahead of it in the cellar. On the palate, this 2007 Cheval des Andes is dry and full bodied. An impressively complex mouthful of black and red fruits is enhanced with the addition of sweet spices, liquorice and cedar. Frankly still overwhelmingly tannic and structured at this point in time, this 2007 Cheval des Andes is huge wine that requires a hearty accompanying dish if it is to be approached now (or in the next ten years), but this abundance of tannin and good acidity offers considerable hope for bottle development and the future. Long on swallowing, this 2007 Cheval des Andes lingers far more gently than the structured palate would’ve had you expect initially.