(Mendoza - Argentina)
Located in the heart of the Luján de Cuyo region in Mendoza, Argentina, Ruca Malen encompasses 22 hectares right at the foot of the Andes Mountains. Drawing their water directly from the snow-capped mountains, Ruca Malen creates wines for every palate and price point. With the introduction in 2006 of a new enologist, Pablo Cueno, who had spent ten years training at Terazzas, the quality of these wines has skyrocketed. This is no longer an estate to watch but one to taste and explore.
The story behind the label is an evocative one. Legend has it that Mapuche women used to walk with their eyes fixed on the ground for fear of encountering the piercing look of a god. One day, a most defiant maiden abandoned her fears and looked straight ahead, right into the gaze of a deity. A flash of lightening captivated her, and she fell madly in love. The god, moved by this young Mapuche woman, took her with him up north to the peak closest to the sky from where light originated, the Aconcagua Mountain. At its foot, the sun shone more brightly, the waters ran crystal clear, and its virgin lands boasted all the bounties of the earth. Sadly, the god had to leave her, yet he offered her a home, Ruca Malen, meaning “the young girl’s house,” as well as a promise in the form of an enchanted nectar that she could drink and thereby re-live all the joy found in his gaze.
Kinien, meaning “the unique one” in the Indian Mapuche language, is the name borne by Ruca Malen’s flagship wines. Offering bright fruit up front combined with excellent structure, supple tannins, and long-lasting finish, these wines offer the consumer a great opportunity to taste some of the best of what Argentina has to offer. On the other hand, Yauquen, pronounced “yao-kewn,” is another Mapuche word meaning “let’s drink together,” and designates Ruca Malen’s value-driven wines. Ruca Malen offers a range of wines from the everyday value to the sublime.