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Argentina’s most important variety came by way of France, where it’s commonly called Côt (sounds like “coat”). Wines are loved for their rich, dark fruit flavors and smooth chocolatey finish.

Malbec, which is also called Côt (“coat”) or “Auxxerois,” comes from Sud-Ouest, France. The thick-skinned grape was a natural cross of two esoteric varieties: Prunelard from Gaillac and Magdeleine des Charentes from Montpellier (the mother of Merlot!).
Malbec is an important blending grape in Bordeaux but, because of its poor resistance to fungal diseases and pests, it never surfaced as a top grape.
The grape really didn’t rise to fame until it was brought into Mendoza, Argentina. It was first planted by a nostalgic French botanist in 1868 who hoped to improve wine quality in the region. Today, it’s now Argentina’s most important grape.