2014 Jade Lake Malbec
When you think Malbec, do you instantly think of the best value at the wine shop? Truth be told, the Agrentines have done yeoman's work at popularizing this once obscure Bordelaise variety - now known more for its South American residence and quiescent affordability than its noble history. In fact, some of the most beautiful Malbec bottlings originate east of Bordeax, in Cahors. It's from this historic AOC in southern France that we draw influence. Our fruit originates from the craggy loam on the east side of Napa's Oak Knoll District, where the vines stress early but the mild climate allows for long hang time; a necessity in cultinvating the true character of Malbec.
Nose Spicy and savory, the wine opens with black pepper, plum sauce, and fresh leather. A swirl of the glass reveals a steady progression of blackberry, coffee, and cherry tobacco with a subtle earthy undertone.
Palate The texture of the wine is supple and fresh with bright red fruit notes and soft, well-integrated tannins. The acid builds toward the mid-palate as notes of briar and baking spice vie for the spotlight.
Finish As the fruit begins to recede, the minerality correspondingly begins to build along with hints of kirsch, mint, and juniper.
Malbec seems to thrive and develop its unique flavor profile in cool to moderate growing seasons. While 2014 will never be classified as a "cool" vintage, the fog that persists in the south-eastern corner of the Napa Valley mitigated the warm days and brought cool breezes most evenings. The result is a well-balanced, food-friendly, delicious wine.