Bonarda is my discovery grape of the month. Bonarda has long been planted and harvested in Argentina, but exported only as a small component in other wines to add a ruby colour, and a spicy bight on the end. Bonarda is not easy to find, and some sommeliers will scratch their heads when asked about it. So, if you want to be the first drinker on the block to spread the word about something new on the market, here is your chance. The Argentinians are pushing this wine as a means to diversify the Malbec only mindset of wine buyers abroad. The Espiritu de Argentina has a pretty good distribution channel, so you shouldn’t have to jump through too many hoops to get your hands on one.
So what will taste when you drink it? This was a dark sweet pie-filling with compote of apples, jammy strawberries, ripe rhubarb finished with cinnamon and spearmint in an oak pie crust. And the bottle will come in around 10$ in most markets.
Musical Match: Collaboration between the very well known Nelly Furtado and the lesser known Alex Cuba – an artist ready to make his mark by himself and outside the shadow of the famous (paralleling Bonarda). This wine has some Latin heat and might even have a “Casanova” character to it.
If you can’t find the Espiritu de Argentina Bonarda, you might look for the Bodegas Santa Ana Bonarda Reserva 2008. With minerality and cassis on the palate, the wine has a nice sense of dryness that will make this a hit with red meat, but still retains some juiciness. Musical Match: Janis Joplin Piece Of My Heart. The more noticeable tannin structure in the Santa Ana Bonarda makes for a punchier almost staccato experience, and the wines minerality and dryness brings it back down to an earthy “bluesy” wine as opposed to the Latin dance beat of the Furtado/Cuba piece.
Leave a comment and me know what wine you would match with this music.
Part 2/5 in the BottleDJ Fall Classic Focus on Argentina.