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Terroir in Focus is a project in constant development, of the Bodega Doña Paula, whose main objective is the generation of information related to the terroir in Argentina. Oriented to the study of the impact of climate and soil on wine, it also aims to share knowledge with technicians, journalists, consumers and wine lovers.
In general terms it was found that Argentina’s Malbecs are more fruity and floral at colder climates. And at temperate climates, they develop other aromas just like soft menthol. With warmer temperatures, the notes of spices (such as white pepper) and herbs (e.g. rosemary and thyme) gain prominence.
Annually in Doña Paula they perform micro vinifications of grapes from different types of soil in their vineyards and this way they are able to come to diverse conclusions. For example, when soils are poorer or restrictive, -due to the presence of stone, sandy texture or calcium carbonate- the wines have more structure and color, given by a higher concentration of phenolic compounds and anthocyanins. Aromas of black fruits and jam appear on the nose. On the other hand, in deeper and heavier soils (with more clay), the highlights are herbal and red fruit aromas.
Four Doña Paula wines chosen by Martín Kaiser, viticulturist of the winery, who reflect the aforementioned characteristics.
Originated in Luján de Cuyo, where the soils are rather deep, with low content of stones. It is a very expressive wine on the nose, where fruits and herbal notes dominate. In the mouth it has a medium structure and very soft tannins.
From our vineyards Los Indios and Alluvia from El Cepillo and Gualtallary respectively, in Uco Valley, between 1100 and 1350 MASL. Within them we look for those sectors with deep sandy soils. The combination of this type of soil with a cooler climate favors fruity and floral notes. In the mouth it has a medium concentration, combined with good acidity and fine-textured tannins.
It comes 100% from the 2015 harvest, from our Alluvia vineyard. For this wine, we use the parcels with the highest stone and calcareous content in the soil, which translates into wines with complex aromas, with mineral notes (ink and graphite), black fruits, thyme, and violet leaves. In the mouth, its concentration is medium-high, with grain-textured tannins. It presents a great aging potential, but still young it is a very enjoyable wine.
Coming from the south of the Uco Valley, with sandy soils which are limited by a layer of black limestone present at 70 cm of depth. It develops an exquisite combination of fruity, floral (violet and pink) aromas and meat reduction notes. With a very long and silky concentrated mouth, it also presents a great aging potential.