A city which seems calm but is actually bustling, green leafy avenues, beautiful and cosmopolitan cafes which invite seductively, Mendoza is a beautiful trap. You might have decided one day here is more than enough but this is where you will go wrong. This desert town is ornamented with beautiful plazas and accessorized with glorious fountains around it. The days make it seem hip and lively but nights transform this town as bars and restaurants all get lit up and overflow onto the fairy tale sidewalks.
Wine could be the second name for Mendoza and this is the just the place you need to be in if you want to tour the various vineyards, pick up a few bottles to take home or are just looking for a good wine to accompany the evening meal.
A list of wines recommended as must tries while in Mendoza are as below:
- 2009 Monte Cinco Malbec
- 2013 Fond de Cave Gran Reserva Malbec
- 2014 Ruca Malen Malbec
- 2010 Kinien Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2012 LC-112 La Colonia Malbec from Norton
With a multitude of wines available and more than enough samples to try, these are a few favorites which are recommended. A few gems have been listed below for those interested, but you can definitely explore more if you have the time and inclination.
These tours start with a guided walk through the vineyard, the production facility of the wines, the fermentation area and the cellar, for a span of about 4 hours which hosts fantastic lunches along with wine tastings and information about pairings. Prices might seem higher in Mendoza, especially since many wine regions around the world offer cheaper lunch menus and free tastings.
But this experience is truly amazing and if you are in Mendoza, please don’t miss this wine tasting, pairing and vineyard tour. You might never go back to this part of the world?
This vineyard owned by Swarovski offers maybe one of the best wine tours. Not only is the 2012 La Colonia Malbec phenomenal, but they also have many different activities lined up for guests.
The experience at Norton is refreshing and unique. You can prune your own vines, collect your own grapes and then get satisfaction watching them get crushed. After producing your own wines, you can taste some more jewels and then enjoy an excellent lunch and informative guided tour.
Norton literally offers a menu card of experiences. 12 in all and averaging at around $75 per person. The ones recommend are the “Winemaker For a Day”, “Working My Land”, and of course “The High-End” wine experience, which gives you tasting of the best of Norton’s Gran Reserva wines.
The regular tour at Ruca Malen starts with a winery visit and a decadent wine pairing menu. It also offers many different types of tours and wine tasting and tours, and they are excellent.
The tour starts with the resident garden which is filled with fresh herbs and produce, then you move to the production plant, leading to the bottling factory, then the fermentation tanks, the laboratory and the cellar, finally ending the tour with an amazing meal and perfect wine tasting and pairing.
You are made to sit in a glass-walled gazebo which overlooks the vineyard, and the resident chef picks fresh, locally grown ingredients from the garden for each of the 7 courses that are served to you.
This experience which is almost magical costs around $70 per person, and lasts for around 6 hours. Refills of unlimited Gran Reserva wine and an unrushed half day visit definitely makes this tour a great value.
Concha y Torro
Concha y Torro is the largest wine-producer in Latin America and also one of the biggest distributors of wine worldwide, so it definitely deserves a visit!
They offer a wine tour, tasting and pairing at $58 USD per person and offer various customized tours, one of which is a trip to their 100-year-old “Devil’s Cellar”. They do offer budget trips at $19 tour and tasting without lunch but it is recommended to enjoy the whole deal.
These are few recommendations but I’m sure as you set out to explore, you’ll find more and more of such beauties hidden in the Mendoza region as they envelope your heart with the sublimity of both wine, food and some soul searching. You’ll truly find yourself wine-dozed in Mendoza.