Growing Conditions

- La Pirámide Vineyard: 3,117 ft (950 m). Agrelo District, Luján de Cuyo Region, Mendoza, Argentina. Deep alluvial loam with 30% clay that decreases soil temperature by 35,6ºF (2ºC) in average. Cabernet Sauvignon. - Nicasia Vineyard: 3,593 ft (1,095 m). Altamira en La Consulta District, Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina. Very shallow loamy topsoil with surface gravel and gravelly (large stones) dry river bed subsoil - optimal drainage. Malbec. - Angélica Vineyard: 3,018 ft (920 m). Lunlunta District, Maipú Region, Mendoza, Argentina. Alluvial origin. Loamy clay in the topsoil with rounded rocks on the bottom. Malbec The winter of 1999 was very cold in Mendoza with variable humidity levels. Spring arrived with temperatures slightly below normal and some isolated precipitation. These conditions had a slight affect on the set of some varietals in some areas. In Catena's Angélica Vineyard this resulted in more isolated clusters of smaller berries in the Malbec varietals, a phenomenon which helped to increase the overall quality and concentration of this fruit in the 2000 harvest. The beginning of summer, towards the end of January 2000, was characterized by lower than normal temperatures and some isolated thunderstorms. These factors helped to slow down the maturation process, indicating a slightly later than usual harvest. The rest of summer in general offered dry and sunny conditions, allowing for a gradual and complete ripening. There were some isolated thunderstorms in the beginning of March. The modern canopy management techniques used in the Catena vineyards, which include leaf thinning and cropping, allow for excellent aeration, ensuring that the clusters remain dry and healthy. These conditions slightly delayed the harvest, offering the opportunity for the fruit to achieve a more complete and thorough maturation. Autumn arrived with moderate temperatures and dry conditions, allowing the grapes to naturally complete the maturation process and achieve their optimum ripeness.

Harvest

The Catena vineyards were closely monitored through regular grape tasting and the decision to harvest was made in order to ensure complete maturation: ripe, sweet tannins and the full development of the components of aroma and color. In general, the 2000 harvest resulted in the cultivation of fruit with extraordinary concentration and balance. The grapes ripened slowly and gradually. Excellent weather conditions during harvest allowed the grapes to ripen completely, achieving their optimum maturation level. The Wines of Nicolás Catena is proud to begin the new millennium with what will surely be a memorable vintage.

Bottling

Unfined and unfiltered.

Winemaking

De-stemmed, whole berry fruit is hand-loaded into 225-500 liter new French oak foudres for a 100% barrel fermentation for a period of 18 days, allowing seamless oak integration. The fermentation temperature is kept low, extracting intense aromas, and the cap management is done by hand to ensure soft, gentle flavors and tannin extraction. Wild yeasts. Alcoholic and malolactic fermentation in barrel leaves considerable lees and sediment.

Aging

The wine is aged in French oak barrels for 24 months. 210 separate row microvinifications from different lots and harvest times.