30 Second Wine Advisor: Malbec another way 30 Second Wine Advisor: Malbec another way

Today's Sponsors

 Club WineWeb
A different type of wine club. Shipping small- production wines DIRECT from a different winery each month and combining the best of a winery- based club with a merchant-based club.

Buy old favorites and try new discoveries shipped directly to your door. The only place to buy wine online.

In This Issue

 Malbec another way
Staying on the Malbec path, we check out an offbeat blend of Argentina's trademark grape with an unexpected partner.
Buy old favorites and try new discoveries shipped directly to your door. The only place to buy wine online.
 Rutini 2006 "Trumpeter" Mendoza Malbec-Syrah ($12)
You could call it a mixed marriage, but the result of this odd blend is a hearty, meat-friendly red, and that's not a bad thing.
 Club WineWeb
A different type of wine club. Shipping small-production
wines DIRECT from a different winery each month and combining the best
of a winery-based club with a merchant-based club.
Administrivia Change E-mail address, frequency, format or unsubscribe.

 Wine Video Watch
 Learn about our RSS Feed

Malbec another way

Following up briefly on Wednesday's article about the giant Gallo firm making its entry into the growing market for Argentine Malbec, let's spend a moment today looking at another Argentine brand that was among the first to enter the U.S. market.

Online references indicate that Familia Rutini winery in Argentina's wine-producing Mendoza region began exporting modestly priced Malbec as early as the 1980s, selling its under-$10 portfolio under the Anglophone label "Trumpeter." Rutini was quickly joined by quite a few of its compatriots, including such early names as Catena and Trapiche; but it was only more recently that the trickle turned into a flood, and more upscale Malbecs and other Argentine trophies expanded the early identification of Argentina with low-end, affordable wines.

Not that there's anything wrong with low-end, affordable wines, as long as they're good. Today's featured wine, an odd blend of more-or-less equal proportions of Malbec and Syrah, bears the Trumpeter label. Owing more to its Syrah heritage than Malbec and a little more to oak, it's a hearty if somewhat simple red table wine that fares well with red meat, and a reasonable value in the range of $10 or so. My notes are below.


It was a great disappointment to have last week's Internet Radio "TalkShoe" on The Battle of the Grapes deep-sixed by a rare technical issue that unexpectedly put our program off the air.

We're going to try it again tomorrow, though, on Saturday, Oct. 13, at 1 p.m. US Eastern Daylight Time, which is 10 a.m. on the West Coast, 6 p.m. in the UK and 7 p.m. in most of Western Europe.

To participate by telephone, simply dial +1-724-444-7444. Enter the code 11888# when prompted; then 1# to enter the group.

To listen live online without phoning in, click the orange "Listen Now" button on the WineLoversPage.com TalkShoe page,

I hope to have the opportunity to talk "live" with many of you then!

Rutini 2006 "Trumpeter" Mendoza Malbec-Syrah ($12)


Clear, dark garnet. Aromas of plums, meat and smoke, it seems to speak more of Syrah (and oak, perhaps) than Malbec. Full-bodied, tart and tannic; black fruit and a hint of fennel. Simple fruit and soft tannic astringency in the finish. Good wine for red meat. U.S. importer: Billington Imports Inc., Springfield, Va. (Sept. 26, 2007)

FOOD MATCH: Fine with my Malbec standard, juicy burgers made with local grass-feed beef.

VALUE: It's an okay table wine, but doesn't really stand above the competition in the lower teens. It's a somewhat better value where available in some markets for under $10.

WHEN TO DRINK: I'm not sure it would evolve significantly with cellar time, but it certainly has the structure to withstand a few years.

Compare prices and find online vendors for Rutini Trumpeter on Wine-Searcher.com:

Today's Sponsor

Club WineWeb

Club WineWeb - a different type of wine club

Until now, you had two options when choosing a wine club:

1. Subscribe to a wine club offered by a winery. These are great if you really like their wines and want a lot of it, but they don't let you explore new wineries.

2. Subscribe to a wine club offered by a wine merchant to get a selection of different wines. The merchant typically negotiates for a steeply discounted price from the winery, then marks up the price to make a profit from the club. There is usually no incentive for the winery to offer their best wines, versus unloading a slow-moving wine at a discount.

Now there is another approach, offering a selection of different wines direct from the winery, where the winery's incentive is to offer you their best wines.

Introducing Club WineWeb, an exclusive club offering wines direct from small-production wineries, at prices less than you can get them anywhere else. Each month you'll receive two bottles of wine, selected by the winery to showcase their style. A different winery is featured each month. These wineries are small and typically have too small of a selection of wines to support their own wine club, and it's very unlikely you would see these wines in your local wine shop. Each winery also provides a limited-time discount on future online orders.

Their best wines. Try them at a discount. Buy more at a discount.

First shipment goes out next week. Sign up at clubwineweb.com

Talk About Wine Online

If you have questions, comments or ideas to share about today's article
or wine in general, you're always welcome to drop by our online WineLovers Discussion Group. This link will take you to the forum home page, where you can read discussions in all the forum sections:

Everyone is free to browse. If you'd like to post a comment, question or reply, you must register, but registration is free and easy. Do take care to register using your real name, or as a minimum, your real first name and last initial. Anonymous registrations are quietly discarded.

To contact me by E-mail, write wine@wineloverspage.com. I'll respond personally to the extent that time and volume permit.

Here's a simply formatted copy of today's Wine Advisor, designed to be printed out for your scrapbook or file or downloaded to your PDA or other wireless device.