Enrique Foster Reserva Malbec 2003
Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza
Dense dark violet red with some brick-like hues.
Alcohol. Bright red and sweet black cherries, intense dark spicy (pepper, cinnamon, clove) plum jelly. Caramel and liquorice notes. A faint trace of wood shavings.
Medium-full bodied and mouth-filling. Rich, intense, sweet and spicy impression with plum jelly and almost kirsch-like cherry. Wood notes of pencil shavings, caramel and a touch of chocolate. Soft gentle tannins with mild acidity and good length. Hints of green herbaceousness on the acidity, recalling sweet green capsicums and eucalyptus. Fairly hot finish.
Bodega Enrique Foster is a relative new-comer in Mendoza, with US-based investment. Adopting a Malbec-only strategy, their entire range of wines are unmistakeably their own. Winemaker Mauricio Lorca talks of Malbec as a big, soft, round, spicy and sweet variety and these are the characteristics he emphasises very clearly across all price points including the entry-level, unoaked Ique Malbec. This Reserva is big - packed with fruit and alcohol (14.5%, according to the label, though the impression is significantly hotter - keep the serving temperature down if you want to get the most out of this), concentrated by 12 months in French oak and bursting with intensity of flavour. The big and sweet style arguably plays up these characteristics at the expense of tannic structure and acidity. However the result is a very good value big, intense, complex and delicious mouthful which for the time being avoids flabbiness, though its long-term cellar potential might be questionable.