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Semillon, 2017. Mendel

Semillon, 2017. Mendel

Item #: XW7031E
Vintage: 2017
Varietal: Semillon
Vineyard/Appellation: Altamira, Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina
Color: Pale Yellow
Nose: Citric and Herbal Notes
Palate: Citrus, Tropical Fruit, Coconut, Caramel
Finish: Dry and Clean
Rating: 92
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now through 2020/13.5% Alcohol by Volume

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  • Description
  • Reviews

One of Argentina's oldest varietals, this rare barrel-fermented white is harvested from 60+ year-old vines and has fresh, clean citrus aromas with a hint of oak. The grapes come from the Paraje Altamira vineyard, Uco Valley . The wine is aged 6 months in 10% barrel oak and 90% non oak. Enjoy fresh, clean citric and herbal notes. Flavors of citrus, tropical fruit, coconut, and caramel are elegant and soft on the palate. A lovely dose of crisp acidity provides a texture similar to that of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc combined. A super dry and clean finish may make this the ultimate seafood wine.

The one white produced at Mendel, the 2017 Semillon is sourced from 70-year-old vines in Paraje Altamira at 1,100 meters in altitude. 2017 saw lower yields because of a late frost, and the vintage produced concentrated, aromatic grapes that give freshness to the wine, with citrus and floral aromas. The whole clusters were pressed, and 15% of the volume fermented in French oak barrels and then matured in those barrels for six months; the rest of the wine fermented in stainless steel and was kept there until it was blended and bottled in September 2017. Semillon and Chenin Blanc were riper in 2017 compared to 2016, which was a very rainy vintage when these varieties had some issues with ripening properly. In years like this, Roberto de la Mota likes to ferment with indigenous yeasts, because there is no need to add any yeasts. He also likes to do an oxidative vinification to stabilize the wine and uses very low sulfur. The wine comes through as very balanced--on both the nose and palate--clean, integrated, faintly balsamic and with very good intensity while keeping the freshness. It opens up slowly in the glass, becoming more nuanced and complex. It should develop nicely in bottle.