Wine Time: Colome Estate Malbec 2009, Argentina

PRICE: $24-$26


WHAT: Malbecs are growing in popularity, and with good reason. The grape yields intense flavors, but it doesn’t overpower your palate. The tannins are usually well integrated and balanced.

The Colome is a typical Argentine Malbec, with intense dark color, nearly purple, and flavors of cherries, blackberries and white pepper. Though the flavor is deep and intense, it has some mellowness from well-rounded tannins after spending 18 months in French oak barrels. About half of the wine went through malolactic fermentation.

The wine is great now, but can be cellared for five to six years.

I loved its powerful, lingering flavor. Teri liked it a lot, too. “Definitely blackberries,” she said, adding that the fruit flavor really stays with you.

Some of this blend comes from 90- to 150-year-old French vines. The sandy and alluvial soils of Colome’s Malbec vineyards yield small crops that produce deeply colored and concentrated wines capturing the essence of this distinct terroir. They have brought the winery worldwide recognition in the form of numerous awards.

WINERY: Founded in 1831, Bodega Colomé is one of the oldest wineries in Argentina.

Located in the Upper Calchaquí Valley in Salta, the winery is home to the world’s highest vineyards, sitting between 7,200 and 10,200 feet above sea level, and to the exquisite boutique hotel Estancia Colomé. The breathtaking views and the expanses of untouched terrain make Colomé one of the jewels in the crown of Hess Family Estates, a family-run business made up of seven wineries across the world.

GOES WITH: This Malbec will go well with game, beef, stews, most red meat on the grill and strong cheese. I tried it with roast turkey leftovers, and it was pretty good. It was even better with popcorn and a scary movie (Play Misty for Me).


DEC. 8

Wine and tapas tasting, 5 p.m., Veritas at La Maison on Telfair, 404 Telfair St.; four wines, three tapas; $19.99

DEC. 9

Wine tasting, 4:30-6:30 p.m., The Vineyard Wine Market, 4414 Evans to Locks Road, Evans; sparkling wines; price determined by flight selection; (706) 922-9463

DEC. 10

Wine tasting, 1-6 p.m., The Vineyard Wine Market, 4414 Evans to Locks Road, Evans; sparkling wines; price determined by flight selection (706)

DEC. 15

Wine tasting, 5-8 p.m., Wine World, 133 Georgia Ave., North Augusta; six wines, cheeses; $5, with $3 rebate on featured wine