Valentin Bianchi - 2005 Famiglia Malbec

Valentin Bianchi has several families or tiers of wines. A step up from the Elsa line whose Malbec I last FMlooked at is the Famiglia Bianchi wines. I'll be looking at two wines in this category. First up is the Famiglia Bianchi Malbec. 8,000 cases of this wine were made. Valentin Bianchi Famiglia Bianchi Malbec spent 10 months in new oak, with 80% of it French and the balance American. The suggested retail price is $18.

Strong plum aromas fill the nose of the Famiglia Bianchi Malbec. The first sip reveals mocha notes and dark berry fruit that carry on through a round, mouth-filling mid-palate that coat the back of the throat. A ton of black pepper emerges in the mid-palate and carries through the finish, which is fairly long and luxurious. A ton of spice notes present themselves throughout. This Malbec is wine that wants food. Grilled meats such as steak or a burger would be excellent accompaniments, as would strong cheeses.

The Famiglia Bianchi Malbec from Valentin Bianchi is a step up in refinement, silkiness and elegance from the Elsa. It has significantly more structure and complexity. I found it to really open up and be it's best after 90 minutes in the decanter. . It has enough structure to suggest that it will evolve nicely for a few years and drink well for a few after that.

There are a lot of well-made wines coming out of Argentina made from a wide array of varietals. However for me Malbec remains their benchmark grape. Other regions make it, but when you want a great Malbec Argentina is the place to look. This release from Valentin Bianchi is a good place to start.

Imported by Quintessential Wines.

Coming Tomorrow: Valentin Bianchi Famiglia Bianchi Cabernet Sauvignon

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