Before the explosion of quality Malbec in Argentina, Bonarda was the most widely grown grape variety in the entire country. Once only used for blends and lower quality wines, Bonarda is now being recognized as a grape with massive potential.
Often you'll still see Bonarda as part of a blend - its acidity and softness can lend depth to more full-on wines made with, for instance, Malbec or Shiraz. However, as more winemakers experiment with its juicy fruit flavors and hint of spice, some very exciting wines are emerging.
Bonarda makes a great addition to Argentina's wine range, going well with Italian food and lighter dishes than the steak-friendly Cabernets and Malbecs that have captured the wine world's imagination. It shouldn't be too long before it makes more of an impression - and you can be sure we're already on the lookout for the most delicious expressions.
Dark cherry fruit, good acidity, medium to high tannins
Wines to Try
Trapiche Broquel, Ramirez de Velazco Bonarda/Shiraz, Alma Andina Malbec/Bonarda
Charbono, Corbeau, Dolce Noir
- Not to be confused with Bonarda Piedmontese, an Italian variety that bears a similar name.
- Bonarda is often the last grape to ripen in Argentina, prompting something of a scramble to get the best single-varietal wines aged and released in line with others.