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Trapiche

Website: http://www.trapiche.com.ar

Trapiche's history dates back to 1883 when it was started by Tiburcio Benegas, one of the most important figures in the history of Argentine wine. Although initially small, Tiburcio built up the vineyards to cover just over 6,500 hectares. When he dies in 1908 his son Pedro took over. Pedro was responsible for creating some of the brands that still exist today. In 1943 the estate was taken over by Pedro's children following his death. In 1971 the estate fell into the hands of the Pulenta family, a large and influential family in Argentina. It was renamed Penaflor. In 2002 it was acquired wholly by DLJ Merchant Banking Partners and once again the Trapiche name was thoroughly revived. Today Trapiche are one of the biggest producers in Argentina and export to over 80 countries. They were actually the first Argentine winery to export wines out of the country. Head winemaker Daniel Pi is considered one of the best in the country.

The ornate and stunning winery is located in Coquimbito, in the Maipu region of Mendoza. The winery is on the site of the original Mendoza-Buenos Airies railway, opened in 1883, with the railway being right outside the winery. The railway is now defunct but remains as a reminder of the innovation of Tiburcio Benegas. The estate covers over 2000 hectares from the Maipu to Lujan de Cuyo and into the finest (and highest) areas of the Valle de Uco. Trapiche have at their disposal some of the very finest sites in the whole country and as such can craft infinitely complex and alluring wines.

Trapiche, although sizeable is still committed to quality wines. With the financial backing at their disposal they are able to continue to push the boundaries of what Argentine wine is capable of. Head winemaker Daniel Pi is considered of the finest that the country has ever produced and he has worked with some of the greatest names in wine production from all over the world. The sheer range and diversity of wines that Trapiche can and do produce is breath taking.

Trapiche have a broad range of wines from entry level to iconic. The Estacion 1883 range exemplifies what single varieties in Argentina can do when handled well. Their single vineyards series of Malbecs show the difference that terroir can make and that their is more to Malbec than many suspect. Since the range was created in 2003 (4 different wines per vintage) not one has scored under 93 points from Wine Spectator.

"My first taste of a Trapiche wine was their Estacion 1883 Cabernet Franc (known as The Broquel at the time) and I loved the purity of expression and the real quality. When I visited them I was amazed to see just how big they are, simply because the wines I'd tasted had a real boutique feel to them. I was lucky to taste a huge range of their wines with their assistant winemaker Diego under the big glass pyramid at the winery. The range was simply incredible, everything from entry level, simple fruity wines to intense, block busting and focused wines. This is a big producer for sure, but quality and innovation are at the heart of what they do." Lee Isaacs, South American specialist.