Malbec is undoubtedly the flagship of Argentine viticulture, and as such, it deserves its own day.

World Malbec Day is celebrated on April 17. The date was established by Wines of Argentina in honor of the day in which Domingo Faustino Sarmiento, at that time president of the Nation, decided to transform the national wine industry.

Sarmiento, a native of the province of San Juan, knew that there was greatpotential in the wine industry. So, on April 17, 1853, he asked the French agronomist Michel Aimé Pouget to collect different varietals from his country of origin and experiment on Argentine soil.

Malbec was in the selection of Pouget, who began to adapt the different varietals that he brought from France throughout the Argentine territory, especially in the Cuyo area. The strain flourished quickly, since in these soils it found the necessary substrate to reach its maximum expressiveness.

Just at that moment the great plague of phylloxera broke out, which devastated the vineyards of France, for which Malbec was almost extinct in Europe, while the variety adapted wonderfully to the Latin American terrain and specifically to the altitude of the Mendoza region.

The great plague of phylloxera.

During the 1990s, Malbec became the most emblematic varietal of the national wine and the most requested from abroad.

Wines of Argentina established April 17 as World Malbec Day in honor of the decision that Sarmiento made in 1853. Currently, more than 60 cities around the world hold events to celebrate the date, including London, New York, Amsterdam and Paris.

With 45,657 hectares, Malbec is the most cultivated variety in Argentina. It is the variety with the highest production nationwide with 3,721,290 quintals in 2020, representing 39.96% of the total reds produced. Mendoza maintains its leadership in the national production of Malbec with 3,195,129 quintals (85.86% of the total reds produced) and it is followed by San Juan with 246,806 quintals (6.63%), Salta with 122,384 quintals (3.29 %) and La Rioja with 65,677 quintals (1.76%).

LostValley Editorial – 2023 *