In the first of what will hopefully be weekly(ish) gatherings of the Wine for the Rest of Us Tasting panel, a double blind tasting of South American reds yielded a clear favorite. But second, third and fourth place finishers were separated by barely a quarter of a star (on a five-star scale).
The winner was the ringer among the four wines--Graffigna Malbec Grand Reserve 2010, which ranges in price from about $17 to $23 a bottle and averages $20 a bottle, according to wine-searcher.com. It averaged a three-star rating from the panel of nine tasters (casual, everyday wine drinkers; not a professional palate among them). But as is typical of the better wines in these blind tastings, its scores were all over the map; one third of the tasters gave it only two stars, while another three awarded it four stars.