My top wines from the Argentina Wine Awards

I’ve just finished writing up the notes from judging the Argentine Wine Awards in Mendoza last month. These are my personal notes and scores on the wines I liked the best out of those that I tried (I’m guessing just over a quarter of the entered wines, because we were split into four teams of [...]

Judging the Wines of Argentina Awards 2017

The judges and trophy winners

For the last week I have been in Mendoza, Argentina. This is the heart of Argentina’s wine industry, and it is by far the largest region, with 156 000 hectares of vines, which constitutes 75% of the country’s vineyard area. This is a lot: it’s about the same as the [...]

Dinner at Edy's with some great people and wines, including some Argentine stars

Edy del Popolo

Had a lovely dinner last night at Edy del Popolo’s place, along with Sebastien Zuccardi (winemaker), Paz Levinson (sommelier), David Bonomi (winemaker and partner of Edy in Per Se) and Andres Rosberg (sommelier). They opened a lot of very good bottles, including some very serious Argentine wines.

David Bonomi

Andres Rosberg

Paz [...]

Visiting the stunning monastery vineyard in Gualtallary, Mendoza, Argentina

 

Edgardo and Paz

Edgardo (Edy) del Popolo and Davi Bonomi took Paz Levinson and I out to see their Monasterio vineyard, high in Gualtallary, in the Uco Valley. Here, at 1500 metres on the ridge of a hill there are some amazing soils, with a very high proportion of active limestone. It’s this combination of [...]

Visiting the CARO winery in Mendoza, Argentina

CARO is the joint project between Eric de Rothschild (Lafite) and Nicolas Catena. Lafite had already begun a joint venture in Chile (Los Vascos) when Baron Eric met Nicolas, and he was quite surprised by the quality of the Catena wines. The two decided to start a joint venture – these were all the rage [...]

Some lovely high-end wines from Catena, Argentina

By a stroke of coincidence, while I was in Victoria (Vancouver Island, not Australia)  today I got to try through this set of wines from Argentina star winery Catena, presented by Catena’s Andrea Nuñez and Daniel Stiefvater of Trialto (the company that brings them into this part of Canada). I was impressed, especially by the [...]

Interesting wines from Argentina: Malbec

This is the third post from a tasting of interesting Argentine wines in Mendoza last month. It’s Argentina’s most famous variety, Malbec. ‘Everyone is talking more and more about regions,’ says Sebastian Zuccardi. ‘They’re talking about altitude, but also soils. Even within the same vineyard we have diversity in soils.’ There were a mix of [...]

Interesting Argentine wines: Bonarda and Cabernet Franc

This was a chance to taste some interesting examples of Bonarda and Cabernet Franc from Argentina, with winemakers Sebastian Zuccardi, Matias Riccitelli and Edgardo de Popolo.

Most Bonarda comes from the east of Mendoza, which is warm and at lower altitude, and it has traditionally been used for volume wines. ‘But if you get low yields [...]

Pedogenic lime in arid vineyard soils - how does it affect the flavour of wine?

When it comes to vineyard soils, limestone is all the rage. But there’s one source of limestone in vineyard soils that isn’t much talked about. It’s the slow formation of limestone in arid vineyard soils, known as pedogenic (‘soil-created’) lime (and alternatively caliche and calcrete). I first encountered it in Central Otago, and then bumped [...]

A quick trip to Argentina, with Doña Paula

So we flew. From Santiago, over the Andes, to Mendoza. The two cities are quite close geographically, but very different.

Mendoza, in the far east of Argentina, is mostly desert. It’s a high desert plain, but where there’s water, there are oases (just 3% of the surface area of the province has enough water for agriculture). [...]