Just when we thought we surely had tasted all the really good high-altitude malbecs from Argentina and that lovely first blush of romance had passed, along comes the 2012 Trapiche Oak Cask Malbec (about $9 at big-box wine retailers) and we're head over heels again for this amorous red varietal.
This wine is an intense and passionate purple in the glass and sports a nose so redolent of plum and warm spice it put us in mind of plum cobbler fresh from the oven. On the tongue it releases a heavenly melange of thundercloud plum, raisins, prunes and mocha highlights. From first sip through a long smooth finish, this wine is robustly dark and rich. It is a wine for lovers.
The list of dishes that will pair beautifully with this wine is long, but our thoughts turned first to Peking duck, to a dry-aged, grass-fed New York strip steak and to quail roasted with wild mushrooms in red wine.
By Colette and John Bancroft. She is the Times' book editor, and he is a freelance writer specializing in food, wine and travel.