2016 Amalaya Malbec Salta SKU #1344826


DC 90 WS 90
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Professional Reviews

K&L Notes

Amalaya is another bottling from Colome, the Salta project which put this parched, high-altitude region on the map for the quality of its Malbec and Torrontes. Where as the Colome-branded bottlings are single-grape varieties, Amalaya is a Malbec blend, historically blending in a tiny percentage of Tannat. Soils in these high-lying vineyards are often times calcareous and granitic, which lends a sense of minerality seldom seen in a sub-$12 wine from anywhere, let alone from a grape known for the fruitiness and generosity of its wines. Terrific value, year in and year out.

Staff Reviews

  • Ivan Diaz
    By: Ivan Diaz
    K&L Staff Member
    This Malbec from Salta, the highest-elevation wine growing region in the world, is a noted departure from its cousins from Mendoza. From the rugged, parched foothills of the Andes comes a medium-bodied, vividly fruited bottling with a touch of Tannat lending a bit more backbone. Great black fruits, cocoa, minerality, bright acidity, and a hint of smokiness make for one of the best red wine values in the store.
  • Chantel Carroll
    By: Chantel Carroll
    K&L Staff Member
    It's so great to find a value wine with so much complexity. This wine has such beautiful ripe fruit layered upon savory elements and a streak of minerality. I suppose that comes from growing at a high elevation. The tannins are silky and well integrated, with balanced acidity. The finish is long lasting, with fresh ripe blueberries and a hint of smokieness.
  • Alex Schroeder
    By: Alex Schroeder
    K&L Staff Member
    Add this to your list of unfathomable values in everyday wine. This shows silky smooth, dark fruit with a hint of smoke and graphite. The tannins are supple and plush with a great balancing acidity. Take advantage while it lasts!
  • Gary Westby
    By: Gary Westby
    K&L Staff Member
    It is not everyday that I am lucky enough to taste a real terroir wine from Argentina. It is far rarer for it to come at such a value price. The Amalaya Malbec comes from staggeringly high altitude vineyards, and that location shows through beautifully in the bottle. Not only does it have the full bodied, spicy, dark fruit character that makes Argentinian malbec so popular with our customers, it also has minerality and depth that are almost never found at this price range. This exciting bottle has surprising complexity and lift to balance its rich power. A must try for any Malbec fan!
    Top Value!
  • Kirk Walker
    By: Kirk Walker
    K&L Staff Member
    This wine is ready to unseat all of K&L's traditional best buy Malbecs, any regular in store customers will known which ones I am talking about. This is more than just a simple everyday red. There is depth of flavor here; dark fruits, a subtle savory note, a touch of that Malbec spice/earth all backed by rounded easy tannins. This is a great everyday red.
  • Joe Bruno
    By: Joe Bruno
    K&L Staff Member
    I had the pleasure of tasting this Malbec at our staff tasting today. A dark horse winner for me, as the intensity of flavors and overall balance of the wine is nicely juxtaposed with a price point of under $12. Aromas of dark and blue fruit compliment a bouquet of mocha and violets. On the palate, this wine is fresh and bright, with flavors of dark berries, blueberry, espresso powder, vanilla, and bay leaf. A great option for dinner parties or as a weekday wine selection
    Top Value!
  • Scott Beckerley
    By: Scott Beckerley
    K&L Staff Member
    Our staff just tasting this little gem today and it is both classical and elegant. Classical in that it has that rich, quite extracted, deep red fruit that you expect from Argentinian Malbec and yet, there are some savory notes and a fairly good dose of minerality and spice on the finish. This rounds out the character better than most and at this price, it is an unexpected treat.
  • Joe Manekin
    By: Joe Manekin
    K&L Staff Member
    Every now and then, I come across wines that are not merely tasty, well made, or solid values, but are consistently best in class. Given its back-to-back showing in 2015 and 2016, I'm tempted to place Amalaya in this category. We have spread the word on both the Torrontes and Malbec blends for two consecutive vintages, and I can tell by the enthusiastic hand-selling of my colleagues, as well as your orders/re-orders, that the message has been sent and received! The 2016 Amalaya Malbec has dark fruit, showing a savory and mineral quality, along with a balanced, slightly smoky aspect. The savoriness of this wine seems to be a stylistic hallmark. While we have plenty of year to go, I'm tempted to place Amalaya among our top red wine values going for those who like a medium to full-bodied wine with plenty of fruit, but not at the expense of structure or character.


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