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2009 Versado Reserva

First impressions are of bold, ripe dark fruits with the classic influences of marmalade and plums. But on a second or third visit to the glass, subtle complexities are revealed: pie cherry, hints of smoke, crème brûlée, tar, freshly tanned leather – all carried on a full, round, textured palate with excellent length. ~ Ann Sperling

Score: 92+ "Probably the best Argentine red to arrive on our shores yet is Versado Reserva 2009 Malbec with its rich lavender, black cherry, graphite and tobacco box hedonism." ~ Gord Stimmell, Toronto Star

" is very apparent that they (Ann Sperling and Peter Gamble) have brought a new sensibility, finesse and complexity to the genre. The Reserva in particular is a revelation." ~ David Lawrason, 

Score: 93 "Deep ruby, denser than 2010; spicy, tobacco, blackberry and lead pencil nose; creamy, rich and spicy, blackberry flavours on the palate; beautifully integrated oak. A stunning wine." ~ Tony Aspler,

4.7/5 "Well worth pointing out is the long-awaited release of Versado, the Argentine project of Canadians Ann Sperling (Southbrook, Sperling Family Vineyards), her highly respected consulting husband Peter Gamble, and local guru Roberto de la Mota. ... A definite step up in both price and quality is their 2009 Versado Reserva Malbec. It’s a rare Argentine ‘reserve’ malbec that doesn’t sacrifice drinkability for raw power and excessive ripeness/wood flavour. This is certainly dense, rich and compact, and still some ways from prime drinking, yet it retains a sense of proportion and balance, with sufficient fruit intensity to match the tannic structure, and fresh, natural and integrated acids. It’ll be best after 2015 I’d suspect." ~ John Szabo, Wine Align

"(Peter) brought along a rare bottling of his 2010 Versado and 2009 Versado Reserva ... The 2009 Reserva sported toasted vanilla, sappy plum, cherry, and spice with more lushness and opulence. Both wines were fabulous displaying power and a tannin character that is more akin to Italian reds than a Bordeaux varietal. 10+ years of aging easily for both wines is not out of the question. They take Malbec to a whole new dimension. Look for them in Vintages, Mar. 30/13 ..." ~ Edward Finstein, aka The Wine Doctor, Beach Metro News

A year in the vineyard

The 2009 growing season saw many changes to the Versado vineyard, all designed to nurture and protect our ancient vines and the scant fruit they could produce.  New trellising to support hail nets was installed.  Lesser vines - a tiny percentage of Criolla interplanted originally as table grapes for the encargado - and weakened vines, were removed. In their place, "new" Malbec plants were added through layering. Layering is where a neighbouring "mother vine" provides a cane and its root system for one year to generate new ungrafted vines, while perpetuating and respecting the massal mix of the ancient planting. Rich organic compost was added to the soil to start the rejuvenation process and reverse the former conventional growing practices, en route to full organic.

The growing season of 2009 started dry in the spring with a good flowering. Summer was long and hot but with good thermal amplitude, with 15 to 16°C difference between day- and night-time temperatures. A very dry February/March/April delayed harvest, resulting in small dark berries ripening slowly through fall conditions, providing intensity with structure. 2800 kg were harvested, resulting in five barrels produced. Considered one of the best harvests since the turn of the century.



  • LCBO Vintages release:  March 30, 2013  #316984 SOLD OUT

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2009 Versado Reserva

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