Riccitelli Viejos Vinedos en Pie Franco 2016
I could have written ‘nearing the A66’, but that doesn’t sound quite as profound for an OAP.
I was introduced to Matias Riccitelli’s wines (or the Young And Exciting Matias Riccitelli as he will always be known to me after some particularly hyperbolic blurb from Majestic) by a globe-trotting Spanish-born friend. My job, he said, was to tell him about French wine and his was to point me to the right Latin American ones. To tell the truth, I think he already knew more about French wine than I did, but I wasn’t arguing.
Anyway, the bottle of Malbec 2015 that he gave me was fantastic. Shortly afterwards Majestic were selling off the 2016 for under £20 and that’s where this came from. It really is grand stuff – it started out like a Tannat when it was opened (possibly a little cold at 15C straight out of the cooler?) but has oddly taken on some more Grenache-like tones as it has aired/warmed up. Terrific deep inky, plummy fruitiness. Definitely my favourite Malbec to date, and a great shame that it isn’t quite such a bargain any more. The matching label Cabernet Franc is every bit as good, by the way.