ABOUT: The Domaine Bousquet Merlot is made from grapes way up in the Gualtallary Valley in Argentina’s Mendoza region. French winemaker Jean Bousquet hiked up this valley of gravel and sand to 4000 feet and found no vines. He figured it would be a good place to plant some organic grapes and he was correct. Being the first to realize the potential of high altitude grape growing has paid off big time. Today, Domaine Bousquet is one of Argentina’s largest producers, exporting 95% of their produce (100,000 cases going to the US alone). At the controls are Jean’s daughter Anne and her husband Labid Al Ameri, with Rodrigo Serrano making the wines. From day one the wines have been made free of pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers, a true feat for a producer this size. And the wines are high quality, delicious, and an incredible value to boot. We’re knocked out by their operation and are happy to have their wines on board.
TASTE: This Bousquet Merlot is delicious as well as an interesting case study of what Merlot at high high elevation can achieve. Classic aromas and flavors or raspberries, plums, and strawberries but just dancing at the edge of ripeness, steering clear of anything jammy. Baking spices, cinnamon and ruddy dark chocolate are in the mix, in addition to a tangy, citrus edge lingering in the background. In addition to all the interesting foods you could pair this with, a burger and fries is probably the absolute perfect pairing.
PAIR: Cranberry, blue cheese and walnut pinwheels, onion tart with grilled sweet peppers, vegetable stew with garlic knots, tomato eggplant soup, and a Jarlserg grilled cheese.