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July 6th, 2018

Adrianna Vineyard: A 100 point Terroir

The Adrianna Vineyard, from Catena Zapata’s family, was awarded by wine critic Robert Parker a 100-point score for two of its wines, being these the first South American wines ever to get the highest score.

The 2016 Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard River Stones Malbec and the 2013 Gran Enemigo Single Vineyard Gualtallary Cabernet Franc, have thus joined the world podium alongside the 2016 Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard Fortuna Terrae Malbec (100 points from James Suckling).

 

"Terroir is everything”, “quality is born in the vineyard" are well known statements coined by winemakers and viticulturalists. This had never before been confirmed so emphatically. This belief has been confirmed emphatically by Parker’s scoring. The Adrianna Vineyard, planted in the Uco Valley, at 5,000 feet elevation (1,500 msnm), was distinguished by Robert Parker – currently the world’s most prestigious wine critic - with 200 points. Two wines obtained from its unique terroir were considered just perfect: the 2016 Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard River Stones Malbec, sourced from a parcel composed of a mysterious rocky soil, which is the former site of an ancient riverbed, and the 2013 Gran Enemigo Single Vineyard Cabernet Franc, sourced from selected Cabernet Franc plantations in the Adrianna Vineyard.

 

The Adrianna Vineyard is unique due to its singular combination of soil (and its microbiome), climate and solar intensity. Its alluvial soil was formed millions of years ago. Over time, the volcanic, seismic and wind activity moved stones and dirt, creating a labyrinth of different micro-terroirs within the vineyard.

 

Influenced by Baron Eric de Rothschild (from Château Lafite-Rothschild), Laura Catena worked on individualizing and studying each parcel of the vineyard, trying to keep their natural balance unaltered.

 

Finding the Perfect Vineyard has also involved luck, says Laura Catena: "my father had planted the Adrianna Vineyard looking for a cooler site, without knowing that the vineyard actually lied on a dry riverbed with an endless diversity of plots. By vinifying separately the grapes from each small parcel, we found “the gold”, and this was pure luck. As my Italian great-grandfather Nicola Catena would have said: siamo fortunati! "