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wine of the week 16/11/2008

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  Salentein (Argentina) Selection 2006
A wine of the week once before for the 2004 vintage, when it was known as 'MCM', this now gets it's Sunday best full name of 'Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot' on the label. I visited Salentein in Mendoza not so long ago and it is a most impressive winery, turning out a really good range of wines at modest prices. Argentina is the source of some really excellent, big-hearted reds made from Malbec of course, but the addition of Cabernet and Merlot in this French oak-aged bottling gives a rich, warming nose of blackcurrant and blueberry, with smoky, plummy notes and some cedary spice. It fills the mouth with sweet black fruit with touches of coffee, more spices and chocolate, delivering a plush but quite complex mouthful of wine. Big, but certainly beautiful at a most unpretentious price, this also lingers on the palate with a good balance of spicy tannins and acidity. Really lives up to the old cliché of 'over-delivering' this one. £7.99, Tesco.