by Fred McMillin
for December 30, 1998


A Bargain Is Born

French-born Jean-Charles Boisset (bwah-say) imported the Best Buy of our last wine course. His dad is the venerable founder of the House of Boisset in Burgundy. So, father and son must have spotted this bargain from some little-known producer in France. Right? Wrong!

Evoluna It's from Argentina. The new brand is called Evoluna. The lunar reference is appropriate since the vineyards are in the foothills of the Andes Mountains, which on a clear night do reach halfway to the moon and stars. Furthermore, my class felt the red Malbec was pretty heavenly, particularly with that $10 price tag.

The Wine

1997 (harvest is in Feb.) Malbec,
Mendoza, Argentina Brand—Evoluna Estates
Importer—Boisset, U.S.A., San Francisco, CA.
Contact—Elizabeth Dimling, (415) 979-0630
Rating—One of the five best inexpensive reds tasted this year. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED in its price range.
Tasting Notes—You can't get Opus One at this price, but you can get plenty of flavor and pleasure from the best red-wine grape of Argentina.
Price—$10 range
Production—3,500 cases


Today we are seeing a rapid increase in the amount of Argentinian wine reaching the U.S.A. Why didn't it happen earlier? After all, 25 years ago the country produced twice as much wine as the U.S.A.; it was the fifth largest producer in the world. Answer: There wasn't much excess to export. On a per capita basis, Argentina was the third largest wine consumer in the world!

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. 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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