And the winner of this year's regional trophy is....
Zuccardi, Emma Zuccardi Bonarda, Santa Rosa, Mendoza, Argentina 2009
When Sebastián Zuccardi describes his grandmother it is clear why this wine has been made in her honour. “Emma is an elegant woman of bright personality, charming, spontaneous and sophisticated at the same time”. The Emma Zuccardi Bonarda 2009 is all that and more.
In Argentina, when it comes to deliver uniqueness Bonarda is up there together with Malbec and Torrontés. Sebastián believes that Argentina’s second-most planted red variety has been somehow neglected. “This distinctive variety has not yet realised its full potential”. In his view Bonarda seems to have the ability to shine in terroirs where Malbec does not achieve its maximum expression.
Emma comes from lot 61 of the family’s vineyard in Santa Rosa planted in 1969 by Sebastián’s father José “Pepe” Zuccardi. They are convinced that this is one of the best terroirs for Bonarda.
In the vineyard Bonarda requires attention, it is a variety that has the tendency to produce high yields. But when it comes to the winery this wine has been made in a simple way: wild yeast, long maceration and only 40% aged in new French oak. The rest is all thanks to the quality and concentration of the Santa Rosa grapes.
The Zuccardis are a family winery that started with Sebastian’s grandfather Alberto in 1963. Their quest for quality and innovation has produced some of the most interesting wines in Mendoza. Emma is so far the best example of Bonardas out there and a clear statement of Bonarda’s pedigree in Argentinian soils.
Written by Matt Chappell