As the summer winds down to its last couple of days, I for one am savoring the last few weeks of grilling out on my balcony, especially now that the sounds of football are usually in the background. For grilled meats that symbolize the season, such as spicy sausages, pork roast and hamburgers, it’s always best to look to red wines with rich, dark fruit flavors and notes of smoke or spice, and my favorite varietals with these types of grilled foods are always either American Red Zinfandel or Argentinean Malbec. I ran across a particular Malbec that has produced two consecutive fantastic vintages, but that are both very different, so I decided to feature both vintages. The 2006 was named the #38 wine of 2008 by the Wine Spectator, but both are still widely available. Enjoy!


BODEGA COLOME MALBEC CALCHAQUI VALLEY 2006, 92 Points, $25, 14,250 cases produced

Smokey aromas of mocha, braised fig, boysenberry and plum above mineral and smoked beef. Harmonious mouthfeel of fig, blackberry and dark plum paste above complex undertones of smoke, chalky mineral and a bitter Turkish coffee note that lingers long.

BODEGA COLOME MALBEC CALCHAQUI VALLEY 2007, 91 Points, $25, 5500 cases produced

Thick purple fruit aromas of plums, figs and blueberries. Deep, rich and ripe on the palate with tons of bursting purple fruit leading into well-intertwined mocha spice and subtle mineral through the long finish.

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