Originally used as a blending grape in France’s Bordeaux region, Malbec has found its true home in Argentina’s Mendoza region.

By Food & Wine
Updated March 31, 2015

There, the grape produces darkly fruity wines with hints of black pepper and leather—like a traditional rustic country red, but with riper, fuller fruit. Malbecs are often very affordable, too, and go wonderfully with steaks and roasts, hearty stews and grilled sausages.

Summer Wine Recommendation: Pair with Grilled Steak

  • (Star Selection) »
    Argentine winemakers Pepe Galante and Mariano Di Paola joined forces a few years ago to create their Mapema brand, which focuses on affordable, delicious wines like this espresso-scented red.
  • 2007 Altos Las Hormigas Mendoza ($12)
    The vibrant purple hue and intense black fruit signal the youth of this lush Argentine red.
  • 2007 High Note ($13)
    American-based importer Peter Click and Argentine vintners José Rodrigo Calatayud and Laura Catena teamed up to create this smoky, blueberry-rich Malbec from Argentina’s Uco Valley region.
  • 2005 Tiza Mendoza ($19)
    Oak barrels add distinctive spice notes to the plummy flavors of this cuvée made for wine importer Fran Kysela.

Rustic, Peppery Malbec

Credit: Tina Rupp

Top Bottles

  • Terrazas de los Andes (Argentina)
  • Bodega Catena Zapata Catena (Argentina)
  • Altos Los Hormigas (Argentina)

The following wines pair particularly well with grilled steak:

Recipe Pairings

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