by Fred McMillin
for July 31, 1997

Alone in Argentina

Prologue: "I must be the only non-smoking, vegetarian, cat loving, female winemaker in all of Argentina. I love it"

...Lynda Hanson

The Rest of the Story: It is entirely possible that before long Lynda may make the best red wine ever produced in Argentina. She's the winemaker for the new Kendall-Jackson venture in that country. She's starting out with some of the best grapes from the best region...old-vine Malbec from the Mendoza. Her first release is from 35-year-old vines. This fall she'll turn out a reserve from 60 to 100 year old vines.

In addition to this excellent contracted fruit, Ms. Hanson will soon have her own estate grapes. The venture, titled Mariposa, has purchased a 1,100-acre ranch at an elevation Malbec loves... 3,500 feet. The daytime temperatures can top 100 degrees. Yet, snow-cooled air drifts down at night to assure good acid levels.

But back to this first release. It has $16 worth of blackberry intensity but costs only $8.50, a fine buy.

1996 Malbec, Mendoza Region, Argentina
Mariposa Winery
Food Affinities—Beef entree, chocolate dessert
Contact—Brittany Lacey, (707)547-4745, X-745

Category: Highly recommended in its price range

Postscript: Speaking of wines from other countries, a student in my wine history class said her grandparents came to the USA from a European country I'll not name. She asked if her ancestors allowed women to drink wine. I told her they did. In fact, they had a saying that the ladies liked their wine old and their lovers young. She thought for a moment, and then replied, "So what's new"?

About the Writer

Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. He currently teaches wine courses at San Francisco State and San Francisco City College and is Northern California Editor for American Wine on the Web. In 1995, the Academy of Wine Communications honored Fred with one of only 22 Certificates of Commendation awarded to American wine writers.

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