Medium purple color; plum, red berries, smoke, leather on the nose; plum, black cherry, licorice, vanilla on the palate.
Dry; mild tannins, especially after decanting. Balancing acidity. Spent 28 months in oak, but percentage of barrels must have been used because there is no oppressive heavy oak, vanilla, or oak spice. Medium-full body.
Cahors, France and Argentina produce world-defining malbecs. They are different from each other, and this Texas effort is different from them. Cahors is assertive; Argentina is especially versatile. This Texas effort is super easy drinker, able to run with Argentina in the delicious race. Both Argentina and Texas High Plains are vineyards at more than 3,000 feet elevations, which seems to be reason this is more like Argentina than Cahors; 13.8% ABV.
Bending Branch Winery is a boutique winery located near Comfort, Texas, in the Texas Hill Country AVA. Dr. Robert W. Young is the owner and winemaker. He focuses on intense wine experiences—high acidity in picpoul blanc, assertive tannins in tannat; versatile easy drinker in malbec. The winery focuses on Texas grapes, particularly ones that have proved successful in Texas: picpoul blanc, viognier, roussanne, tannat, tempranillo, and this malbec.
In addition to his medical degree and board certification in preventative medicine, “Dr. Bob” holds a winemaker certification from UC-Davis. He is a member of The American Society of Enology and Viticulture and the Texas Wine and Grape Growers Association. Dr. Bob purchased Ursa Vineyards in California in 2014, and Greg Stokes and Deborah Elissagaray of Ursa are now part of the Bending Branch winemaking team.
Bending Branch Winery Malbec, Newsom Vineyards, Texas High Plains 2016 is smooth, very easy drinker. Elegant effort. Another reason to take Texas wine seriously. Pair with grilled or smoked red meats; lamb shanks; herb-roasted chicken; grilled swordfish; marbled pork chop. $44