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Malbec

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It's easy to see why Malbec has exploded in popularity recently. The Malbec grape displays lush fruit, bold spice, and a smooth mouth-feel, plus it's food-friendly (pair it with steaks and other red meats) and available at a wide range of prices from "everyday" to "cellar me."

The grape's traditional home has been western France, as one of six grapes permitted in Bordeaux, where it is blended with Cabernet and Merlot. Wine Master Jancis Robinson refers to French Malbec as a more "rustic" version of Merlot.

By and large, however, Malbec's new home is in Argentina, where it dominates viticulturally. Here, the Malbec grape is made into single varietal wines, as well as blended with its classic partners Cab and Merlot. The Argentine version tends to show more fruit and a more velvety texture than the French Malbec. Red Wine enthusiasts are taking notice!

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