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Bodega Luigi Bosca
The strapline on Luigi Bosca’s publicity campaign reads “Luigi Bosca is not a Malbec of Argentina. It’s THE Malbec of Argentina”. While this might seem bit presumptuous at first, anyone who knows the estate’s history will have to agree. In terms of originality and longevity, Bosca cannot be beat.
An Argentinian winery with a European soul
The oldest family-owned winery in Mendoza, Bodega Luigi Bosca was founded in 1901 Don Leoncio Arizu. Don Leoncino had come to Argentina from the Basque country ten years previously in search of success. He found it in the small Mendoza valley estate and joining forces with the Boscas of Piemonte in Italy, they founded Bodega Luigi Bosca. Today the estate is in the hands of Don Leoncino’s grand and great-grandsons, who have taken Luigi Bosco from business to brand in three short decades. The Arizus are also partly responsible for the elevation of the Argentinian wine scene; the family collaborated actively to create the Lujan de Cuyo Denomination of Origin (DO) appellation in 1988. Under its DO regulations, the appellation adheres to strict ageing and viticultural rules, including the fact that vines must be a minimum of 50 years old. This has gone a long way to ensure that Argentina is accepted alongside the likes of Bordeaux and Burgundy.
The only way is up
With vineyards set in the premium areas of Maipu, Tupungato and Lujan de Cuyo, vineyards are planted between 780 and 1,150 metres altitude and are farmed biodynamically. Malbec is, of course, the signature grape, but expect varietals of Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Riesling as well. Of these, the winery then produces 11 collections and at least 35 first and second wines. Of these, we will concentrate on the flagship bottle, the Luigi Bosca Malbec Lujan de Cuyo. This has seen consistent good critic coverage (and journalistic column inches) and older bottles of this can fetch well over €2,000 a bottle. This proves the Argentinian Malbec’s ageing potential. With recent vintages such as 2016 selling for around €20 a bottle, the wine has a good chance of quadrupling its value in ten years.