Victor “Kid Platinum” Palencia picked up five Platinums this fall, giving him a career total of 48 that he’s made across three brands since 2009. One of those came a year ago for the Monarcha 2018 Malbec, so it’s no surprise to see him go above and beyond this year with a unanimous Platinum award for his ebullient 2019. Despite the price and the youthfulness, there’s a riserva-style approach in this bottling as fig, bacon and black olive add complexity to the theme of blackberry jam, chocolate and crushed herbs. The tannins are beautifully refined, and there’s pleasing brightness with blueberry juice in the finish. Award: Bellingham Northwest (gold).
Rating: Double Platinum, 97 points
Production: 268 cases