The sun may set on the Layer Cake empire — for now — but as we do make wine in five countries on four continents, we’re always preparing for or engaged in harvest somewhere. So as we endure record springtime temperatures stateside, our first-rate winemaking team just returned from harvesting our Malbec in Argentina where the scenario this growing season was rather opposite of what’s happening in the US. Unseasonably cool temps and heaps of rain in the Mendoza region along the flanks of the mighty Andes Mountains led to some challenging conditions. Call it global what-you-will, but the area got practically an entire year’s worth of precipitation in January and February alone.
Needless to say, this can cause some wine mavens to panic. But not our hearty crew! As usual, we stay the course and wait for our grapes to properly mature so that we may bring you only the best wine possible. Yes, you can put that on a bumper sticker. While some Nervous Nellys got cold feet, literally and figuratively, and picked their grapes early so as not to jeopardize the quantity of their yield, we simply waited out the customary warmer weather. It was a gamble, as it often is, but it paid off as finally a string of clear, sun-drenched days ripened the grapes sufficiently for our standards. We’re also fortunate enough to have an amazing location in the Barrancas subregion located in the flatter, rockier river bed of the Mendoza River which allows for water to drain more quickly than along the hillsides. While our 2014 yield was less than previous years, the grapes are top notch — and thus, the 2014 Layer Cake Malbec will be yet another pleasure with which to quench your thirst. Or to enhance a meal on the barbecue. Or to take to the beach house. Or enjoy at an outdoor summer concert. Or celebrate a special event. Or drink because it’s Tuesday. You get the idea. Buy early, buy often because there won’t be as much 2014 as you’re used to, but what there will be should be awesome. As usual.