With my brother-in-law coming over for dinner, I knew we would open two bottles of wine, so I thought a "New World vs. Old World" thing was in order. Malbec was the subject of this age-old dispute, and was paired with a wintery beef stew.
To compare old world vs. new world Malbec, I grabbed the following from my cellar:
2001 Chateau Lagrezette (Cahors)
2004 Clos des Andes (Mendoza)
The Lagrezette was the elder, with the extra bottle age a distinct edge. While mainly Malbec, this wine also has some Merlot (and Tannat in some vintages). Despite its age, it was a deep purple colour in the glass. On the nose the wine had an awesome creme caramel nose, with blueberries, leather, and some meaty and vegetal scents. Pleasing and complex. On the palate this wine was blackberries and leather with dry, velvety tannins. Extremely well balanced, this wine wine had nice length - ready now, but should also keep for a few more years. Overall, a gem of a wine, in its prime.
Cost: C$24 (SAQ)
The Clos des Andes is a product of Bodegas Poesia. While I have had many Argentinian Malbecs in the past, tonight was my first experience with this estate. The label claims 100% Malbec, but some internet searches say otherwise, so we can say it (like the Lagrezette) is predominantly Malbec. The nose was floral (violet), followed by coffee and chocolate - very peppery as well. On the palate, this youngster was still awkward, showing rich chocolately fruity and powerful, harsh, tannins. While the tannins should settle down over time (they definitely softened over the evening), it was definitely a more "New World" style of wine - great winemaking, but bigger fruit. A nice wine, I will wait a few years before opening my other bottles.
Cost: C$27 (LCBO)
Overall, a very nice evening of Malbec, with two quality products. Age and elegance won out, with all three tasters giving the nod to the "Old World" selection.