Wine Of The Week: Zuccardi Malbec Concreto 2021
Pair this fantastic Argentinian malbec with grilled meats, or enjoy on its own.
Malbec has remained singular in my mind for years, particularly Argentinian Malbecs, which are often big, rich, hammy, and heavy. This wine isn’t that. When Sebastián Zuccardi took over his family winery in the early 2000s, he started concentrating on making wines that were more expressive of Mendoza’s terroir.
The Zuccardis have long been one of the top producers in Argentina, but Sebastián wanted to take their craft further. So he started working with vineyards higher up into the snowy Andes Mountains (the Paraje Altamira area in the Uco Valley), which offer cooler, crisper climates compared to the sun-soaked desert valleys.
That higher altitude gives the wine a freshness — think the plummy Malbec characteristics infused with a fresh gasp of mountain air. Instead of the usual oak influence from barrel aging, Zuccardi ages this wine entirely in concrete tanks, allowing it to be a pure expression of the grape.
Lively colors of violet in the glass, with dusky notes of black plum, old leather, cassis, and lilac and a bright freshness to pull it all together. Medium-bodied and quite full, but plush and velvety on every sip. A fantastic bargain for the price, and one that will only get better with time.
It’s a great weeknight wine. Open it for a glass the first night but go back to it the next day – the minerality shines through and the complexity only depends. I love malbec on its own — it’s highly drinkable — and a star alongside grilled meats (think Argentinian steak or South American sausages) or grilled vegetables topped with chimichurri. $50
Kate Dingwall is a WSET-trained sommelier and spirits writer. Her work has appeared in Wine Enthusiast, Eater, Forbes.com, and Food & Wine, and she pours wine at one of Canada’s top restaurants.