That's right - Bonarda.
On Sunday night to accompany wife's requested Mother's Day Cheeseburgers (God I love that woman) we had a bottle of unoaked/unfiltered Bonarda from Argentina. The wine was just what I thought it would be: ripe, juicy with black fruit, cassis but a little less spice than I'd hoped for. The wine was perfect with the beefy burgers and would, and maybe will, go nicely with lamb sausage on the grill.
But what is Bonarda you ask ? Well it got me to thinking, and googling. My initial thought was partially correct as I remembered Bonarda being used in Eastern Spain and Italy - which it is, or is it ? Further research revealed that the Bonarda used in Piedmont may, in fact, be misnamed Croatina and that the Bonarda in Argentina is thought by many experts to actually be Charbono.
So is this really Bonarda I drank ? Who knows, but it is a fruity well balanced glass of fun AND the #1 grape grown in Argentina - whatever it is.
Colonia Las Liebres Bonarda 2005 CSPC#369066 $12.95 - medium bodied with lots of ripe, but not over ripe, blackberry and cassis, a bit of chocolate, a bit of spice kinda like California Zinfandel used to be. Not great value for the price but worth a buy for a weekend BBQ just to be able to say "Yeah, I brought the Bonarda". Oh yeah and Colonia Las Liebres means colony of hares so that's why there are cartoon rabbits on the label.