Malbec. Dark, inky purple, almost black – although the color falls just short of a good Petit Sirah – with plums, black cherry, blackberry, plums, and occasionally chocolate and leather. It can be jammy and the tannins can be grippy. This Bordeaux varietal is the star of Argentina, and it’s the quintessential meat wine. Argentina is all about the meat, and this wine caters beautifully to big red meats of all types.
Because it’s rich, tooth-staining, tannic, acidic, and delicious, it’s perfect with sausages, beef of any kind (including bison – try it!), winter beef stew, veal, spicy foods, and many types of cured meats. It can sometimes out-Cabernet Sauvignon Cabernet Sauvignon!
Pescetarians and vegetarians may find this too big a wine to have with halibut or tofu.
The great thing about Malbec is that even with its outstanding character and accolades, it’s still a great bargain. A quick search will turn up 93+ point Malbecs for about $35.00. What a deal, especially when considering that a Cabernet Sauvignon from, say, Howell Mountain, may cost $150.00 or more. I won’t confirm or deny whether I’ve ever actually paid said price for anything from Howell Mountain, home of nectar of the gods.
But what if it’s a weeknight between paydays and you want some MEAT and a Malbec? Well, it seems that your options may be limited. Or not.
I went to my local Target after work to buy some kitty litter, hedge shears, and Corn Nuts (don’t ask). While there, I realized that Target now sells wine, and I started browsing the wine aisle. I had a pound of some organic ground beef waiting for me at home, and I wanted to have a decent weeknight wine with it. My Turley (pick one) and my Siduri wines were out of the question. Because $$$.
I found this wine, 2017 Girl & Dragon Malbec, for $12.99. It’s a product of Mendoza, Argentina, and is surprisingly yummy, especially considering the price. It paired perfectly with my hamburger (no bun) and avocado salad, by the way.
I found the usual Malbec notes, albeit somewhat muted. Black cherry, plums, blackberry, a touch of cinnamon, and unexpectedly, a soupçon of licorice, which quickly came and left. It had a touch a black tea, no leather, and, thankfully, a total absence of the metallic nose and tinny flavor of a bargain (cheap) wine. While it’s not exactly exploding in typicity (but then, Target didn’t have and my wallet couldn’t handle $35.00) it’s still a good wine that will pair just fine with weeknight fare.
Oh yeah. The link to their website.
PS – The label is gorgeous