The Best Malbec in the World Revealed

Wine news

lun. 16 oct. 2017

A high altitude Malbec, produced at an incredible 1,020 metres above sea level, has been revealed as the best Malbec in the world according to the results of the world-renowned International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC).

The IWSC has revealed the 2017 South American and Mexican wine results and The Viniterra Single Vineyard Malbec, 2015 has been announced the winner of the coveted Malbec Trophy - the highest commendation awarded by the competition. And this success may all be down to the pioneering winemakers who have braved the elements at this summit-scraping vineyard to produce a wine of exceptional quality made from meticulously grown grapes.

Judged by a panel of world-leading experts, the 2017 results shine a spotlight on the growing trend towards wines from extremely high altitudes:

  • Gold award-winning Argentinian red, El Esteco Fincas Notables Tannat 2015 is produced in the renowned Calchaqui Valley at an incredible 1,800 metres above sea level.
  • Similarly, Silver award-winning wines from The Finca Las Moras wines are produced in the San Juan Valley, whose altitudes reach a staggering 1,350 metres above sea level.

The more extreme weather conditions at greater heights; more direct and concentrated sunlight, dramatic temperature shifts, and exceptional drainage,makes it a struggle for survival and means that all energy in these vines is preserved to produce fewer grapes but of exceptional quality.

Dramatic shifts in temperature from hot days to cold nights forces the grapes to ripen more slowly and efficiently, giving each surviving berry even more character. Meanwhile concentrated sunlight in high elevation vineyards causes the grapes to develop a ‘tan’ in the form of a thick, tough grape skin, adding to the vivid colour and strong tannin of the wine, as well as increasing its ageing ability.

While their vines may be hidden in the clouds, consumers are starting to take notice of these fascinating wines, and the extraordinary quality that altitude brings to their flavour, colour and aroma. These sky-reaching liquids possess all the complexities of fine wines and the IWSC are perfectly placed to communicate the exceptional results of the toils of these high altitude vineyards to the rest of the world.

Pip Mortimer, Senior Tasting Manager at the IWSC, says, “there has definitely been a shift toward wineries including specific regional labeling on their bottles, in a move to emphasise altitude, as consumer interest and awareness of these exceptional wines increases. This year’s South American and Mexican results show the mark that these prestigious wineries are making on a national, and international scale, proving a cut above many others within their own category, and the competition as a whole.


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Notes to Editors

Tasting notes are available on request.

For a full list of the South America and Mexico wine results, please visit


About the International Wine & Spirit Competition

  • Established in 1969, The International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) was the first competition of its kind, set up to seek out, reward and promote the world’s best wines, spirits and liqueurs. Now in its 48th year, The IWSC’s relentless pursuit of excellence underpins every aspect of the competition today
  • The IWSC is set apart by the formidable reputation of its judging process. Panels are made up of carefully selected industry experts including Master Distillers, Masters of Wine, wine and spirit buyers and sommeliers; WSET qualified educators and respected wine and spirit journalists. Every single wine and spirit is blind tasted and assessed on its own merit within the context of its class
  • Currently receiving entries from 81 countries, the IWSC is truly international in its reach and recognition
  • The IWSC’s partners around the world work throughout the year to drive awareness and promote winners to both trade and consumer audiences
  • With 48 years’ heritage, an IWSC Award is recognised internationally as a badge of quality


For more information, please contact:

Rachel Watt                                          Jon Black  

W Communications                               International Wine & Spirit Competition

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T: +447963 000 727                            T: +44203 176 6461