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Friday, May 27, 2011

Wine Tasting - Maipe Reserve Bonarda Old Vine 2009

"This is one of the disadvantages of wine: it makes a man mistake words for thought."
 - Unknown

There are two more white wine reviews from "The Grapes Less Traveled" class that Tiffany and I attended.  However, I thought that I would take a break and jump to one of the red wines tasted.  It's the one wine that we purchased that day.  This selection filled one of those most coveted, but limited, spaces within our wine racks.

Chucky Point Score:  91
Tiffany Point Score:  90
Wine Spectator Score:  88
Wine Advocate (Robert Parker) Score: 88 points

Maipe Reserve Bonarda Old Vine 2009

Appellation:  Mendoza, Argentina
Grape Varietal(s):  Bonarda (same grape as Charbono)
Retail Price:  $14.99
Vintage:  2009
Producer:  Bodega Chakana
Alcohol:  14.0 %
Calories:  98 per 4-ounce
Argentina Labeling Requirements:
    Reserva = 6 months in bottle of oak
    Gran Reserva = 12 months in bottle or oak
    Reserva = 12 months in bottle or oak
    Gran Reserva = 24 months in bottle or oak

Tasting sheets as follows.

Chucky's Review
Tiffany's Review

Mmm... Does this wine smell good or what?  Tiffany and I both experienced cherry notes on the nose.  However, I detected my favorite red wine smell.  Something that I affectionately like to call "stink".  Sometimes described as "dirt", "earth", "musty", or "wet dog".  With the red wines, it has been my personal experience that the stinkier the wine aroma the better the taste!  Can't wait to pour this wine over my palate, indeed!

The label reads as follows:

"Maipe Reserve is crafted from hand selected parcels of the first grapes grown at Chakana Estate.  The grapes are carefully chosen and fermented in small lots to insure vineyard identity.  The resulting wine is barrel aged 12 months to fully reveal the character of the Andean terroir.  A smooth complex wine with intense, savory fruit flavors, great length and elegance.

  Produced and estate bottled by Provia S.A.L."

Their website reads as follows:

"DESCRIPTION:   A true rarity, the Old Vine Bonarda is made from a grape one rarely sees (basically it is planted in Italy and Argentina).  This dense purple-hued, somewhat monolithic offering reveals loads of briery fruit, and reminds me of a hypothetical blend of a Barbera and Zinfandel.  Briery, crisp, and dense, it is not terribly complex, but is very satisfying on a primary level.   Drink it over the next 1-2 years."

A bold chocolate-cherry taste on the palate with hints of currant, cassis, oak and/or earth.  Relative high tannins equates to good shelf life.  The vintner suggests 1 to 2 years but I personally believe that this should safely keep for up to five years.  But, they have the vested interest you drink this bottle today so that you may purchase a replacement bottle tomorrow.  :)

Hi-dee hi-dee are-not-red-wines-simply-delicious-ho my friends.


  1. "However, I detected my favorite red wine smell. Something that I affectionately like to call "stink". Sometimes described as "dirt", "earth", "musty", or "wet dog".

    Apparently you like wine infected with brettanomyces, Chucky. More power to ya--somebody has to drink it.

  2. Hi Chris. Whether it's the yeast or something else which makes it so, it's delicious to my palate. Low levels of brettanomyces have been said to positive affects, while high levels negative, on vino. Wherever my favorites fit onto this low-high scale, I'm certain that no two people have the same optimal taste points. That's the true beauty of vino... There's a bottle out there for everyone! A toast and thanks for your comment, my friend. :)