NAPA, Calif., April 14, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- If there were any doubts that "new world" wines can outclass their "old world" counterparts, the recent results of a prestigious international wine competition in Paris should erase them.
For the first time, the Union des Enologists de France (French Winemaker's Association) has awarded the coveted "Trophee Vinalies Internationale" for "Best Dry Red" to an Argentine wine – Bodega Valentin Bianchi's Famiglia Bianchi Malbec 2012. This wine, from one of the oldest family-owned wineries in the country, had the highest score of over 3,500 wines tasted from 41 countries The blind tastings were conducted by 150 members of an international judging panel.
It is especially noteworthy that this competition, held in the country still regarded as the "epicenter" of wine scholarship and appreciation, has elevated this rich, robust and perfectly balanced Malbec to a "world class" level. It is reminiscent of the legendary "Judgement of Paris" in 1976, when some then relatively unknown California Cabernets scored higher than their French counterparts by a largely French judging panel during a blind tasting, rocking the wine world's notions that only Old World wines (predominantly French, at that time) were worthy of high praise. That competition cemented the high quality reputation of California wines and accelerated the growth of the state's wine industry.
It is no great surprise that this competition has recognized the "special qualities" of a wine coming from the San Rafael "sub-region" in the southern part of Argentina's well-known Mendoza wine region. The grapes are hand-picked from Bianchi's Dona Elsa Vineyard, situated in Rama Caida at 750 meters above sea level, near the foothills of the Andes Mountains. Rama Caida is among the coolest areas of San Rafael (a "high desert" region with hot days and cool nights). The soil is sandy calcareous, of alluvial origins. Growing conditions are ideal for Malbec, Argentina's "signature red grape."
This 2012 vintage Malbec from the winery's popular premium-priced Famiglia line, at a suggested retail price of $19.99, will also feature a new label in elegant dark gray with metallic gold accents and copy in white and gold that highlights the Bianchi's emphasis on being "Family Vintners." The Vinalies International Trophee and Gold Medal seal is seen over the top right corner of the label.
For further information, contact exclusive importer Quintessential at www.quintessentialwines.com or call (707) 226-8300.