Women in Wine: Susie Selby and her Malbec for #WorldMalbecDay #SonomaWineMonth

Selby Malbec

Happy World Malbec Day!

Malbec is a classic French grape, one of the few that’s allowed in Bordeaux blends, and famous from Cahors just south of Bordeaux where it is known as Côt. 

In recent years, it’s gained recognition for its expression in Argentina where the grippy tannins ripen and the wine is more fruit forward; Argentina instigated World Malbec Day for this date back in 2011. 

But don’t ignore Malbec made in the US! In Washington, the blue fruit shines, it’s fabulous  from Lodi, it works well in Oregon, and in Sonoma, like the Selby Malbec below, it’s rich ripe royalty.

Selby Malbec

Tomorrow April 17 is Malbec Day and the month of April is Sonoma Wine Month, so what better time than to focus on Susie Selby’s Malbec?

While Sonoma is best known for Russian River Chardonnay and Pinot Noir as well as Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel, Dry Creek Valley is also the source for Selby’s Malbec. However, Sonoma County vineyards include more than 60 varietals of wines and there’s over 400 wineries. Find Sonoma Wine Month events and activities here.

Susie Selby in front of her Healdsburg tasting room

In fact that’s what Susie Selby loves about Sonoma: “What I like best is the diversity and the quality of the fruit,” Susie said during my October visit to Healdsburg. From that diverse fruit, she makes fifteen different wines most years. There’s a diversity of fruit because of the diversity of soils and micro-climates, she explained.

Sonoma Wine Country also has the sweet spot of Healdsburg going for it; this where the Selby tasting room and winery is located. Why Healdsburg?

“I love it. I fell in love with this town. It’s the best town in Wine Country.”

Susie says she appreciates that it’s easy to walk around and that it’s very European like: “In Europe, people have always done things outside. Restaurants are open outside even in the winter months.”

Happy Sonoma Wine Month and Malbec Day!

2015 Selby Malbec Creek Valley, Sonoma
ABV 14.5%
SRP $33
sample for my review 

Color: Dense medium plus plus, garnet on rim and ruby in glass.

Nose: Baking spices like cinnamon and clove, sandalwood and incense cedar.

you could smell this all day — takes you off into a daydream, tranquil, to a temple, meditating, incense…

Palate: Mellow for a malbec, not as dry and tannic, luscious blue fruit with raspberry and earthy rhubarb balanced with acidity and tannins. While aged for eighteen months in French oak, it adds complexity and nuance without masking the fruit.

A humdinger of a winner!

Pairing: Try BBQ pork ribs, brisket, smoke meats, and yes lamb! We loved it with a lamb Shepherd’s Pie which is a super spring dish as well as grilled chicken. Great with a charcuterie platter. Works really well with mimolette, a dark orange hard French cheese that likes passionate wines. Think strong and hard cheeses.

A classic pairing with Malbec is empanadas and these classic pairings but we also love it with a manchego Mac n cheese.

Discover Selby Cabernet Franc and Selby Merlot. Still to come: Selby’s fabled Russian River Pinot Noir.

Link to Selby website.

Check out Susie’s journal here. 

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