The story of Terrazas is one of visionaries and adventurers who made bold decisions at a time before the winemaking potential of Argentina was known. Terrazas de Los Andes was founded in 1996 in the heart of Mendoza. Inspired by Roberto de la Mota, son of Raoul de la Mota – one of Argentina’s most respected winemakers who identified the enormous potential of Malbec in the 1970s – Terrazas de los Andes is a pioneer of high-altitude viticulture and in creating great wines from Argentina.
The estate’s history has been dedicated to carefully selecting the most adapted altitude for each grape variety, providing them with the perfect natural conditions to thrive. Nestled high in the foothills of the Andes, Terrazas de los Andes takes its name from the “terrazas”, a series of terraced plateaus at the foothills of the Andes mountain range, scattered over altitudes ranging from 800 to 1,800 metres.
The Terrazas winemaking philosophy starts in the vineyards, by producing its own grapes for all its wine collection. Starting with the best fruit, the winemaking credo is to reveal the highest quality in the wines through respectful and precise winemaking techniques, which the team brought to Argentina from France. The estate subtly blends French know-how with exceptional Argentinian terroir, pursuing the Franco Argentinean impetus started over twenty years ago.
All Terrazas vineyards are cultivated, harvested and vinified separately and specifically according to sub-parcel. With more than 220 sub parcels across its 10 vineyards, the Terrazas viticultural approach involves producing a great number of small batches of wine, each of which has reached its maximum fruit expression potential. Only at the very end are the small batches of wines selected and blended together by the winemaking team to craft the final creation.
Las Compuertas, the estate’s oldest vineyard, was first planted in 1929 at 1070m to produce the ultimate expression of Malbec, the French grape brought to Argentina in 1850 by Michel Aimé Pouget, and has become the country’s king variety. Terrazas Malbec is a 100% Malbec blend from the emblematic estate-owned vineyards of Paraje Altamira, Eugenio Busto, Los Chacayes and Las Compuertas. Terrazas Malbec reflects the Estate’s signature winemaking style, revealing facets of a layered and complex expression of Mendoza’s terroirs. This wine is fruity, nicely layered and fresh guided by balance and elegance from start to finish.
The 2017 harvest was characterized by its high quality and low volume. The cold of the previous two spring seasons combined and resulted in low weight clusters, but the concentration and general quality of the grapes was exceptional as a consequence of the health of the grapes, the excellent weather at the time of maturity and the low quantity of grapes per plant.
The reds were highlighted by very intense colours, aromas of fresh fruits, flowers and spices. Due to the yields and excellent maturity, the wonderful concentration of tannins and very intense colours that were achieved in this varietal are amazing. The typical aromas of red fruits, plums and violets are very present making it a perfect pairing with red grilled meats and hard cheese this World Malbec Day taking place on Friday April 17th.
Terrazas de los Andes 2017 Vintage Malbec, RRP €19.95, is available at select independent off licenses across the country.