Black Barn Malbec 2005

Black Barn has an interesting range of wines, including some that are unusual in the context of Hawkes Bay producers. This wine, a straight Malbec, is one of them (they also do a Sangiovese and straight Cabernet Franc in addition to a wide range of other red and white wines). I tried this at cellar door and it seemed promising at the time, so I picked up a bottle for more thorough tasting later on. Captivating, expressive nose of dried flowers (of similar character to Gimblett Gravels Syrah, though this wine is from a different sub-region in Hawkes Bay), sweet jammy Malbec fruit, some oak, some stalk/foliage. Complex without being forbidding. The entry is smooth and tactile; the point at which fruit flavour hits the tongue is quite palpable. Full bodied middle plalate is full of intensely sweet fruit, more savoury dried flowers, and toasty oak. The wine’s line continues strongly through the palate and rises a little during the after palate, creating a nice lift of flavour. The finish is characterised by fine, chocolate-like tannins that extend the wine’s flavour most satisfyingly.What a fun wine. There’s nothing super sophisticated about this number, but it’s full of flavour, shows good complexity, has character and is ready to drink right now. What’s not to like?Black BarnPrice: $NZ35Closure: DiamDate tasted: December 2007

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