Vines –like humans –prefer cooler nights for better sleep and a nice warm sunny day,” Anne Bousquet, Co-founder Domaine Bousquet.
“We teased him about buying a beach,” says Anne Bousquet about the sandy soil in the Argentine vineyards purchased by her father using money from the sale of his vineyards in France, “but he was adamant because this soil makes elegant wines and that characteristic was very important to him as a Frenchman.”
Her father desired this sandy soil because it provides the low fertility desirable for vine stress, with good drainage, and no salinity issues.
From the beginning, all of Domaine Bousquet wines have been made 100% with organically grown grapes because of a combination of factors including soils, altitude, and ground water, but most important is a very dry climate. Altitude offers a diurnal shift: cool at night, warm during the day.
“Vines –like humans –prefer cooler nights for better sleep and a nice warm sunny day,” says Anne. They shut down when it is too hot or too cold.
Anne should know; she grew up in the business, first in Southwest France where her father had a third generation winery and vineyards –until he sold it all and set up shop in the Uco Valley of Argentina’s Mendoza region in the 1990s when no one believed wine grapes could thrive in such a cold, hostile, high altitude place. But he proved them wrong, and Anne fell in love with the landscape, an area where growing organically could work out well for wine.
Anne studied economics in the US, and had her career in Boston, as well as her family, but when her dad asked for help in 2004, she said yes, and brought her one year old daughter back to Argentina, moving to a small town after living in large international cities.
Working together did not go easily, and many arguments ensued. But Anne stood up for her ideas. In 2011, she and her husband bought out her father’s shares to be co-owners; he still lives on the property where he tends his own organic vineyard. Her brother now runs the business in Europe.
Anne maintained a dual life for many years until recently: in 2018 she quit being an economist and went full-time into wine– although being an economist certainly must help with running a business growing as fast and as large as Domaine Bousquet! In 2015 she moved back to the US to Miami so her daughter could go to school; from there she and her husband manages the business with help from the team in Argentina.
Anne has impressive goals for Domaine Bousquet; soon they will be one of the largest organic wineries in the world, producing 1.5 million cases sustainably and ethically produced as evidenced by their pursuit of B Corp certification and biodynamic certification. (What does that mean? Read more here.)
Domaine Bousquet Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 / SRP $13
Domaine Bousquet Gran Malbec 2018 / SRP $25
- cheese board
- beef stew with mashed potatoes and sautéed dandelion greens
with Cabernet Sauvignon:
- figs with goat cheese
- smoked gourmet three beef burgers
- grilled vegetables
Domaine Bousquet Cabernet Sauvignon 2019
Grapes: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Grapes are grown at 4000′ altitude offering cold nights and warm days.
Color Dense and cloudy
Aroma Cassis, cherry, cherry snuff, blackberry, black current, there is a lot of fruit on the nose. Nice bright fruit.
Palate Lots of oak with bright tart fruit. For Sue the oak dominates and overtakes the lovely fruit present on the nose. I preferred this wine when it was a bit colder.
Pairing: Goat cheese stuffed fig with pancetta, smoked burgers, smoked eggplant, smoked potatoes.
Results: Fantastic with the fried pancetta that was sprinkled over the goat cheese stuffed fig. Such a nice complexity between the wine and the appetizer. Fruit, creaminess, and salt, brings out the same characteristics in the wine. Fabulous with the smoked burgers especially when there are a few bites of fried pancetta in the mix. The smoke from the Tregor was a bit much for the eggplant. Very nice with the oven roasted sweet potatoes with rosemary. It loves the rosemary herb.
Domaine Bousquet Gran Malbec 2018
Grapes: 85% Malbec, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot, 5% Syrah.
These organic grapes are also grown at 4000′ elevation in the Andes which means an intense diurnal shift– cold nights and warm days– which slows ripening and helps obtain complex aromas. Hand harvested, 20 days maceration, then aged in French oak.
Color: Very purple, plum, ruby rim, cloudy density
Aroma: Lots of black and blue fruit, red fruit, very fruity on the nose, mint, sage, chaparral.
Palate: Grippy tannins, blue fruit, great value wine, nice sipping wine, nice character, nice complexity, easy to drink.
Pairing: Cheeses, dandelion greens, beef stew with mashed potatoes.
Results: Very nice with aged cranberry cheddar. I wanted a sandwich with roast beef and this cheese to pair with this wine. Great with the Snowdonian aged cheddar bringing out ripe blue fruit in the wine. The beets in the salad bring out the blue fruit in the wine. Beets are a nice foundation for red wine. They balance out the bitternss of the greens. The wine loves the dandelion greens which might not be for every palate, but they were fantastic. We wondered how the greens would be on the grill, or even with added duck fat or pork fat. In any case, this was a great pairing with the wine. The beef stew was nice with the wine, bringing out tart bright fruit in the wine.
Stay tuned and subscribe for more organic soon to be biodynamic Domaine Bousquet wines. Read here about organic Domaine Bousquet white wines ranging from $13-$25 plus details about the vineyards and soils.
PS Where do you want to travel in 2022?
South America? Argentina?? Domaine Bousquet??
Do you want to experience more organic and biodynamic viticulture?