Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Viñedos Malagon: Finding Gold in Francisco Zarco (3/3)


Baja Wine Country News
by Steve Dryden

Nathan and Durant have teamed-up to create some awesome wines. Nathan is so intensely focused on creating high quality wine that he sleeps in the winery during fermentation so he can push down the caps himself and monitor every step of the process! Jose Luis Durant is one of Mexico’s top creative wine artisans. These two young and ambitious “ vino desperadoes” have created three phenomenal wines. Their 2006 Equua is a magical blend of 70% old vine Grenache and 30% Petite Sirah, aged in oak barrels for 12 months, retails for $350 ps. They’ll be releasing the 2007 Equua in about one month with a slightly different blend of 80% Grenache and 20% Petite Sirah, retails for $350 ps. It’s very distinct, rich, full of character, and of excellent quality. The 2007 Reserva is their most elegant wine, an outstanding blend of 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% old vine Grenache, 14% Petite Sirah, and 6% Merlot, aged in new French oak barrels for 12 months, retails for $650 ps.

These remarkable wines can be enjoyed in their charming tasting room, decorated with classic Spanish-style handmade furniture located in a 110 year old reconstructed adobe Russian house. The tasting room consists of a small wine bar and staffed kitchen, two separate rooms with sitting areas, as well as two separate patios where you can enjoy wine and cheese platter service. Tastings are by appointment only and are for a maximum of 8 people per tasting. Van tours are available, guided by either Nathan himself or a local wine writer for the Baja Times.

The bed and breakfast facility is one of the most charming settings in the valley. Centered in a courtyard that features a cantina, private kitchen and dinning area with fireplace is most attractive and addictive. Visitors can cook their own meals in the fully stocked kitchen or have a local chef cater to their gourmet culinary desires. A 36 inch plasma television with Direct TV satellite and original handmade furniture compliment the dinning area. Four deluxe room options are available to meet your specific needs.The suite named the “Grenache Suite” features one queen bed, large private bathroom and spacious living room area with sofa. This room also features a private patio looking out into the beautiful private gardens. The “Green Room” includes one queen size bed, private bathroom and balcony with a sitting area offering a majestic view of the mountain range. The “Blue Room” includes two full size beds with one private bathroom and balcony with sitting area featuring a view of the mountain range. Many guests rent the entire complex to host family, friends and clients. Be warned that one visit to this amazing B&B maybe the beginning of a long term relationship with the ranch, the friendly Malagon family and their incredible wines.
Visit their web site for details, directions and reservation information. The Malagon family is generous in sharing their traditional family values along with their love of the valley. Come and explore their award-winning wine and discover the beauty and depth of quality old vine Grenache wine and more! With the future of Mexican wines in the hands of young and ambitious ““vino desperadoes” such as Nathan Malagon and Jose Luis Durant ~ the possibilities are endless....

Steve Dryden is a wine, food and travel writer living in Guadalupe Valley where he guides private and small group wine tours. He can be reached at: sbdryden@hotmail.com

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