The 2012 vintage was awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2016 edition review of Argentina (see blue link below).
Kaiken Mai Lujan de Cuyo Mendoza 2012 - October 2016 Decanter review
Kaikenes are wild geese, native to Patagonia, that fly across the Andes between Chile and Argentina. Montes, the Chilean winery, crossed the Andes in the same way to set up in Mendoza. Their vineyards are situated in the heart of Mendoza and further to the south in Valle de Uco, where many of the premium producers are now sourcing their fruit. The focus is primarily on Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon, a variety that has been somewhat forgotten as Malbec has surfed one wave of success after another in the past decade. Kaiken's own vineyards supply 70% of their production requirements and 30% is from vineyards that they control.
The grapes used to make Mai are sourced from vineyards located in Vistalba (Mendoza) where the soil consists of an 80-cm top layer of alluvial sandy-loam containing riverbed pebbles. Vistalba has some of the oldest vineyards in the area and is regarded as one of the best sites in Argentina to make premium wines. The vineyard is more than 100 years old and has naturally low yields marked by extraordinary concentration. The vineyard is managed using traditional methods, the same as when it was first planted, and also applies the principles of biodynamic farming.
The 2014 harvest followed an ordinary spring with normal rainfall and regular temperatures. Early-summer temperatures were very high, with heavy rainfall. March and April were marked by high humidity, low temperatures, and many cloudy days. For the black varieties, these conditions yielded spicy and floral aromas.
Grapes were hand-picked into 15kg trays to preserve the quality of the berries throughout the process. The must was fermented in small tanks over a period of 7 days at controlled temperatures of 25-30ºC. This was followed by post-fermentation maceration, which lasted approximately 20 days depending on each specific batch. All the wine was aged in new French oak barrels for 18 months prior to bottling.
This wine is deep red in colour, with purple hints. On the nose, it displays fruity aromas of plums and cherries combined with spicy notes of tobacco and cinnamon. An elegant and complex wine, with soft tannins and a long lingering finish.