Saturday, February 2, 2008

Cueva de las Manos Cabernet

Proviva S.R.L.
Cabernet SauvignonCueva de las Manos (Reserve)
Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina
$10.99 -- Parker & Otis, Durham, NC

Color: Dark ruby
Nose: Rosemary, Pu Erh tea, shoe polish
Body: Full
Front: Spicy plum
Middle: Raspberry coffee
Back: Graphite, figs
Burns clean?: Perhaps not
Cap: Cork

This tasting is based on about an hour's airing. This wine reminds me of powerful Australian shirazes. There's a little of the cabernet profile in there. But largely it's other strange things. Not bad things, but strange things.

A note on the bottle: "Cueva de las Manos" (Cave of Hands) refers to a pictoglyph site in the mountains of Argentina, fragments of images of which are reproduced in slick style as visual elements of the label. The wine is proclaimed, on the back label, to be the winery's tribute to the indigenous people of Argentina. That seems like an odd thing to me, on several levels. It's not clear what the indigenous people of Argentina are getting out of such a designation, though this doesn't rule out that they're getting something. But even without quibbling about dedicating an alcoholic beverage to an indigenous American population or the formal oddity of a French grape being chosen, it seems like a weird gesture; or, perhaps, seems little more than a gesture.