Winery: Doffo Winery
AVA on Bottle: Temecula Valley
How They Describe It
The 2017 Malbec highlights all of the best characteristics of the varietal. The ruby red color has deep tints of violet and navy blue. Aromas of strawberry and vanilla open the aromatic profile which then delivers hints of vanilla, coffee, and tobacco. The acidity brightens the long lasting finish while showcasing the finesse of the fine oak tannins. We recommend pairing this delectable wine with a BBQ and our homemade Chimichurri sauce. Salute!
How I Describe It
The Doffo 2017 Malbec shows deeply colored and intensely ruby red. Malbecs tend to have purple notes, and while very subtle, you can see those hues in this wine.
First comes a bouquet of rose, black currant, and blackberry. Undertones of ripe raspberry, strawberry, and eucalyptus follow. Oak and fermentation show with a hint of cheese blintz pastry, toasted baguette, and smoke.
Malbec is known to be a somewhat mellow wine — more delicate than other varietals grown in Temecula, like Syrah, Petite Sirah, and Cabernet Sauvignon. While the Doffo 2017 Malbec does an outstanding job keeping to that standard, the warm Temecula terroir certainly brightens the flavors considerably. Black fruit is much more pronounced on the tongue tan on the nose, with black currant, blackberry, plum, and black cherry. The latter lingers long after the sip ends. In fact, after taking trying the 2017 Malbec, wait 30 seconds and then lick your lips. A smooth wave of black cherry and grenadine develops, recalling the prior sip.
Along with the black fruit, black pepper and fennel add spice, while bread dough, cloves, vanilla, and cedar contribute complexity.
Doffo’s 2017 Malbec is dry. As a varietal which thrives in sunlight and warmth, Malbec grapes don’t over-produce sugars while on the vine. The fermented result is a nicely medium 13.9% alcohol. In fact, this wine is “medium” across the board: medium tannin, medium acid and medium body, making this a terrifically unobtrusive beverage. That said, flavor intensity is an impressive medium-plus, and the finish is remarkably long.
Why is This Wine Special?
Wine is special when there’s a good story to accompany it. The Doffo family immigrated to the United States from Argentina (by way of Italy) where Malbec is most significant varietal. Consequently, while Doffo Winery is well-known in Temecula for its Zinfandel and Syrah, Malbec is the flagship — a callback to the founder’s Argentinian roots.
One factor which makes the Temecula Valley AVA unique is the myriad grape varietals planted in the area. For an appellation with only 3,000 planted acres of grapevines (by comparison, the Napa Valley AVA has 43,000 planted acres), you’ll be hard-pressed to find a wine region with a more eclectic varietal mix.
You’ll find no shortage of Spanish and Italian varietals, as their home climates closely align with Temecula’s. Also, keeping in line with trends and demand, most Temecula wineries have bet big on bold, full-bodied, intensely flavorful wines — like Syrah, Petite Sirah, and the Cabernets (Franc and Sauvignon).
For that reason, it’s nice to see a winery produce a softer wine like Malbec, with such care and precision. More below.
When & How I Would Drink It
During some occasions, big and beefy aren’t the right characteristics for your wine. And for those times, the Doffo 2017 Malbec is an excellent option.
As with other Malbecs, the Doffo 2017 Malbec pairs especially well with leaner yet hearty meats like lamb, turkey, pork, some chicken dishes, and (as you’ll find mentioned often on other websites) ostrich.
Whatever the circumstance, this wine takes easy drinking to an opulent level.
How to Get It
Order Online: https://shop.doffowines.com/2017-malbec-p261.aspx
Bottle Price: $65
Cases Produced: ~700 cases
Have you tried the Doffo 2017 Malbec? How did the tasting notes compare with your experience? Leave a comment below.