The nose reveals a hint of violets and spicy ripe-berry scents. Ripe, mouthfilling blackberry and plum
flavors are inflected with notes of allspice and orange zest. Juicy acidity balances the sweet dark fruit on the
Black cherry, licorice, baked plum, cinnamon, blackberry.
Argentina has become known for terrific red wine values, led by the popularity of smooth, fruity Malbec.
But there’s more to Argentinean wines than just Malbec and this smoky estate grown Bonarda is a great
example. Héctor Durigutti made his reputation as the winemaker and cofounder of Altos Las Hormigas,
one of Argentina’s most prestigious estates. His younger brother, Pablo, built an impressive résumé with
stints at high-profile Argentine wineries like Rutini, Catena and Cinco Tierras. In 2005, the brothers joined
forces, taking over Maza, a historic Mendoza estate in the high subregion of Luján de Cuyo. Keeping the
old exterior, they built a state-of -the-art production facility that combines the latest technology with
traditional methods. The Durigutti brothers have had success with Malbec and more recently with
Cabernet Sauvignon, a grape used historically in Argentina as a blending agent rather than on its own.
Cabernet Sauvignon takes equally well to Mendoza’s desert climate, lean soils and high altitude.
Bonarda’s medium tannins, ripe fruit and fresh acidity make it a flexible match at the table, able to pair well
with red meats, hearty poultry, veal and pork. Ribs, chops or roasts with a touch of sweetness to their glaze
will match the wine’s ripe fruit flavors. Alternatively, dishes with a touch of spice and heat will work well,
too, thanks to the wine’s natural acidity. Simpler fare, such as basic steaks or roasts, will work beautifully, as
will those enhanced by a boldly flavored rub or sauce. For a mid-week simple snack, try it with my Sloppy
There are a few Bonarda vineyards in the varietal’s native Savoie, France (where it’s known as Corbeau),
and in California (where it’s called Charbono), but no other country has championed this grape like
Argentina, where it’s the second-most planted variety.