Achaval-Ferrer is easily one of the top ten producers of Malbec in Argentina. A partnership between several Argentineans, which includes Santiago Achaval Becu and Manuel Ferrer Minetti, and their Italian friends Roberto Cipresso and Tiziano Siviero, this exceptional team has been fashioning outstanding Malbec since 1998. World renowned for his Brunello di Montalcino in his native Italy and his ability to work magic as a consultant for other highly acclaimed estates, Roberto Cipresso is the chief winemaker at Achaval-Ferrer.
Roberto Cipresso began his winemaking career in Montalcino in 1986 with Case Basse, Poggio Antico, and later in Ciacci Piccolomini d'Aragona, where he was Managing Director. In 1992, he created the prized Montalcino estate of Fattoria La Fiorita, where he continues to craft small quantities of outstanding Brunello. In 2000, Roberto was asked to fashion a special wine for the Pope in honor of the 2000 Papal Jubilee, and in 2001 he was nominated as Italian Winemaker of the Year for his many outstanding contributions to winemaking. In addition to working full time at Achaval-Ferrer, Roberto continues to consult for other leading Italian estates. What Roberto Cipresso seems to do better than almost anyone else is transform grapes from distinct terroirs into polished, world-class wines without forfeiting authenticity or the full expression of each vineyard. And nowhere else is Roberto Cipresso's great gift more apparent than in the beautiful Malbec wines he fashions at Achaval Ferrer.
Malbec is one of the original red wine grapes of Bordeaux, France (where it is called Cot or Pressac). While it is rarely used any longer in Bordeaux for more than adding a bit of color and body, it remains one of the five grapes allowed in red Bordeaux, along with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Petit Verdot. However, south of Bordeaux in the region of Cahors, Malbec still reigns supreme. It is the chief grape used in what historically has been called the "black wine" of Cahors.
Today, Argentina is the new champion of Malbec, where it is the most important grape variety, both in terms of quality and quantity. The best Argentine Malbecs are age-worthy wines of great distinction.