Hervé Fabre is a magician second to none when it comes to making great Cabernet and Malbec. Descending from a family of wine négociants in Bordeaux, he arrived in Argentina in the early 1990s, he was surprised to find that nearly every other investor in Mendoza’s wine renaissance was buying undeveloped land and planting new vineyards. They were ignoring the old vineyards that had been established a hundred years earlier by earlier French immigrants. Hervé quietly bought them up, and today, these ancient vineyards surround his beautiful winery in Vistalba – Lujan de Cuyo, near the town of Mendoza.
After tasting Herve’s latest release, the 2021 Malbec Reserve, I expected big scores were going to attach to the wine. It certainly looks like I was right. It has that vibrant and jammy mix of red and dark fruits with great structure and tannins and a sleek core. It’s a BIG RED that dances in the glass and with a very modest price tag. It’s such an easy ‘buy’.
92 Points, Vinous
The 2021 Malbec Reserva, from Vistalba, Lujan de Cuyo, was 60% aged in barrels for 12 months. Purple in color. The nose presents notes of fresh plum and violets, white pepper, strawberry, hints of spice and aromas from the aging process. It’s initially indulgent in the mouth, with good fat and volume and a velvety texture. The flavors are bold and full-bodied. This 2021 overdelivers at the price.
92 Points, James Suckling
Lots of juicy, ripe blue and black fruit here with some rosemary stems, fresh walnuts, capers and flowers, too. It’s full-bodied with creamy tannins and a supple finish.
91 Points, Wine & Spirits
Hervé Joyaux Fabre, born into a négociant family in Bordeaux, came to Mendoza in search of vineyards in the 1990s. A portion of this wine grows in the vineyard around the winery (the first vineyard Fabre purchased, planted in 1908). It has a persistent core of blueberry and coffee flavors initially obscured by elevated alcohol and sandalwood notes. That core outlasts the interference, though, and a wild decant helps to muscle it open, bringing the fruit flavors forward.
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Absolutely everything. The best part might be that is equally good with or without food.