Bodega Cecchin Malbec ‘Non-added Sulfites’ 2008, Mendoza (£9.75 Caves de Pyrene)
Quite pale in colour, and while there’s plenty of juicy cherry, strawberry and dark fruit flavour, there’s also a dainty, refreshing gluggability. Does have some of the clay-slip-like edge I find in many unsulphured wine, but no lack of freshness – charming stuff. S(-)

Mendel Malbec 2008, Mendoza (£17.99 Majestic, Hispamerchants)
A little formal after the Cecchin, but still has sprightliness and bounce. Ruddy plummy berry and blackcurrant flavours mix with a strong earthy fragrance and touches of smoky oak, and it’s not been over-polished. Tasty now, but plenty of life ahead of it. S

Catena Malbec 2008, Mendoza (£12.25 Majestic, Waitrose, Bibendum)
A more manicured style, but still has some of the feisty, savage wildness – satisfying, rich and chunky with lots of dark fruit. S-

Tesco Finest Malbec 2009, Mendoza (£6.49 Tesco)
A little lost after the previous three, but still has some wildness, fragrance, bounce and pounce, with deep blackberry and blackcurrant flesh pepped up by notes of vanilla, violet and spice. B(+)

Finca La Anita Malbec 2009, Mendoza (£22.99 Averys, Hispamerchants)
Slightly medicinal/savoury brett edge, nut also has the rustic sexiness, touches of liquorice, lots of red fruit flesh and a hint of Cola that reminds me of old ripe Sangiovese. S-

Altos Las Hormigas Valle de Uco Malbec ‘Terroir’ 2009, Mendoza (£14.99 Liberty Wines)
Confident, charming style, sweet black cherry, blackcurrant and blackberry to the fore, vanilla and violet behind, and a fresh, grown-up earthy finish. S

Viñalba Malbec Reserva 2009, Mendoza (£10.99 Majestic)
Majors on power rather than elegance, ripe and polished, with soft, plush, plummy berry fruit, and a finish that veers to close to sweet for real class. B(+)

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