Benegas Don Tiburcio 2019
red cherry, blackcurrant, black plum, clove, eucalyptus and vanilla
Don Tiburcio Benegas, governor of Mendoza at the time and lifelong wine lover, used his considerable money and influence to promote the wines of Argentina and establish the Mendoza region’s prominence. In between diplomatic missions to France, drafting agricultural laws for vineyard planting and governing, he somehow found the time to start up a winery of his own. El Trapiche, the family’s initial winery, was a tiny vineyard that quickly grew to over 16,000 acres before Don Tiburcio’s death in 1908. Today, the Benegas wines are still cultivated in the family’s original vineyards, although the winery has since been sold, and continue to offer impressive quality and value.
Two separate vineyards, both initially owned by Don Tiburcio, are farmed to create this wine: Finca la Encerrada, where the Malbec is sourced, is located 4,500 feet above sea level in the Uco Valley, while Finca Libertad, where the other Bordeaux varieties are farmed, is located on the banks of the Mendoza River itself. These different terroirs are blended together to create a wine with increased complexity, acidity and length. Cabernet Sauvignon, ripening earlier on gravelly riverside soils, is harvested first, followed by Cabernet Franc. The other grape varietals, particularly Malbec, enjoy a longer growing season and are harvested nearly a month later.