ALPAMANTA, a winery in the Mendoza region of Argentina, was founded in 2005 by three partners, Andréj Razumovsky (the CEO) from Austria, Jérémie Delecourt whose family have owned the Côtes de Provence estate, Château de la Croix Bontar, for many generations, and Andrej Razumovsky’s cousin André Hoffmann from Switzerland. In the 18th century the noble family of Sayn Wittgenstein farmed extensive vineyard holdings in Moldova. Andrej Razumovsky and his partner and cousin Andre Hoffmann are direct descendants of that family. The first vines were planted for Alpamanta in 2006. Alpamanta’s first vintage was 2007.
THE NAME | Alpamanta means “Love to Earth” in the local native culture.
CERTIFICATION | 2007 Conversion to full organic certification began. 2008 Rene Piamonte began consulting on Biodynamics. 2010 First vintage with full organic certification. 2011 First vintage with full Demeter Biodynamic certification. 2017 Still certified Biodynamic.
VINEYARDS | 35 hectares (85 acres) planted from 2006 on Calle Cobos in Ugarteche, the southern part of Luján de Cuyo, in the Mendoza sub-region, 23 miles (38 kms) south of the city of Mendoza. 950 metres (3,100 feet) altitude. Only 200 mms (<8 inches) annual rainfall.
WINE GRAPES | 50% Malbec, plus Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
BIODYNAMICS | 2016 Sheep, chickens, horses, and all the wild plants needed to make the biodynamic preparations. No cows though, so buy in manure
WINEMAKING | Alvaro Espinoza has consulted.
The main brand is ‘Alpamanta’. The ‘Natal’ label is used for wines from younger vines.
CHARDONNAY | 2012 Barrel fermented. Barrel aged 4-5 months. Bottled. Rich, savoury vanilla pear at the Demeter Austria 2018 wine tasting.
SAUVIGNON BLANC, 280 BREVA | 2015 5g/l RS, 20ppm SO2. Lively at Millésime Bio 2016. 2017 Wild ferment in stainless steel tanks and new oak barrels. Bottled unfined, unfiltered after 5 months. 50ppm SO2. Cloudy, savoury, hoppy flavours at the Demeter Austria 2018 wine tasting.
SAUVIGNON BLANC, TERROIR | 2015 Aged in a 1,000-litre Stockinger oak cask. 1,200 bottles. Salty acidityat the Demeter Austria 2018 wine tasting.
SYRAH ROSÉ, BREVA | 2015 Fermented in egg-shaped vats. 900 bottles. 20ppm SO2. Cloudy, fresh at Millésime Bio 2016. 2017 Fermented in Nomblot egg vats. Alcoholic ermentation lasted 10 months. 1,300 bottles. 4g/l residual sugar. Clear fruit flavour at the Demeter Austria 2018 wine tasting.
MALBEC 2007 Debut vintage. 18m in French oak.14%. Alvaro Espinoza consulted. 2012 Very good at Millésime Bio Jan 2016.
MERLOT | 2012 Starting to lose its fruit (at Hawkwood College, Stroud, England 16-17th Nov 2015).
DIRECTIONS | Head south from Mendoza towards Ugarteche on road 15 or the Acceso Sur (Ruta 40). Turn to the right once you get to the entrance of the village of Ugarteche and continue on road 86, direction Tupungato. Look out on your left for small signs saying Calle °1 etc. Turn to the left at Calle °4 (Calle Cobos) and continue straight ahead for about 4,5 km until you see Alpamanta’s entrance at your left.
Alpamanta Estate Wines, Ugarteche Vineyards, Calle Cobos s/n, Ugarteche, Luján de Cuyo, 5509 Mendoza, Argentina / +54 (0) 261 420 3643 / www.alpamanta.com
Demeter Austria 2018 wine tasting, Vienna 26th February.