10 of the Most Exquisite Argentinean Bodegas for Tasting Wine in Style
Where to Wine and Dine in Argentinean Style?
You simply cannot visit Argentina and not take at least one wine tour through some of the most charming bodegas in the country. Most of them are owned by families and have very old traditions, exquisite restaurants with a great view of the vines and of the surrounding areas. You could even make a weekend out of it and indulge. The people in Argentina love to take their time enjoying a good meal and a fine wine. Why not learn from the locals and get even more rest and relaxation from your holiday than you bargained for in the first place?
10 exquisite bodegas you can only visit in Argentina
1. Bodegas Salentein
Photo credit: [email protected] | The cellars of the Bodega Salentein
This magnificent bodega is shaped like a cross to facilitate the management of the entire estate. There are restaurants on two levels in every wing of the structure. The winery is spread across 121 acres of land and it is situated at an elevation of 4000 feet. Another impressive feature of the place is the cellar located at 26 feet below the ground. Here, the wine is stored in old French oak barrels.
2. Bodega Catena Zapata
The Catena Zapata Bodegas
The Catena Zapata bodega was built like a pyramid, on a structure similar to that of a Mayan temple. The first vines were planted here by Nicola Catena in 1902. Now, generations later, another Nicola Catena is running the family business along with his daughter, Laura. The current Mr. Catena is a former professor at the University of California, Berkeley. The work of the family is taken to a new level with the creation of the Catena-Zapata Institute of Wine.
3. Familia Zuccardi
Photo credit: Jorge [email protected] | Wine tasting at the Familia Zuccardi bodega
The winery of the Zuccardi family started off as an experiment for irrigation techniques in 1963. Engineer Alberto Zuccardi was responsible for the project. Why visit the Familia Zuccardi Bodega? Because the classy restaurant with large glass walls allows you to see the vineyards while to enjoy the food and taste the wine. Everything is beautiful and unique.
4. Bodega Ruca Malen
Founded in 1999, the Ruca Malen winery is a rather new place especially if we compare it with the rest of the wineries opened at the beginning or the middle of the 20th century. The place is very appreciated among wine lovers and foodies. And if you want to plan one trip here, know that you will be looking for reasons to come back again and again. And you will find them. The menu is changed every three months with new dishes that pair well with the wine and the place is so beautiful that you will want to see it in all seasons.
5. Pulenta Estate
This is another winery founded in 1902 and managed today by the third generation of the same family. If you get here, make sure you try the pride of the estate: the 2011 Pulenta Estate Malbec.
6. Bodegas Lopez
Jose Rivas Lopez planted the first vines in 1898 and founded a winery that is now run by the fourth generation of the Lopez family. This place has the best of both worlds in matters of quantity and quality as its size allows an industrial level of operations and they still manage to produce some artisanal wines.
A tour of the Bodegas Lopez can take you through the bodega museum where you can see the trucks used to transport wine back in 1920 and some of the old wooden presses. Another great thing about coming to these very old bodegas is the chance to taste wines that are 10, 15 or even 20 years old.
7. O. Fournier
The O. Fournier winery
Opened in 2000, the O. Fournier Bodega is spread across 650 acres at the foot of the Andes. Situated at an elevation of 4000 feet, this is one of the highest wine growing regions in the world. Its restaurant, Urban, is one of the most appreciated winery restaurants in Argentina. Its most celebrated product is the Urban Uco Malbec.
8. Bodega Carmelo Patti
This is an atypical bodega if we were to think of the other places and of the ways in which they chose to present their products. Carmelo Patti chose to trade the razzle-dazzle of the beautiful setting for the bare magic of really good wine. So is it worth visiting a place where wine is made in a garage? Yes, because what comes out of the hands of Carmelo Patti is wine magic and its quality is generally acknowledged among connoisseurs.
9. Andeluna Cellars
This winery has a very romantic setting, to match its name. Take the tour as it is very eeducational and you get more information than from the generic, basic stuff you hear everywhere. The general consensus is that the place is very warm and welcoming and that visitors love to come for a wine tasting but end up lounging around.
This is a winery built in 1937 and restored in 2007. The building preserves its original structure but attention was paid to introducing pioneering French wine production technology. Temperature is under strict control and the resulting wine has a guaranteed cleanliness and varietal purity.
This is but a short list of the finest bodegas in Argentina as it also depends on where your travels may take you. You are strongly encouraged to go out and find your own favorites and add to our list. This country has a lot to offer with its Southern and Northern wineries so never shy away from such an opportunity. We are also certain that the people you meet along the way will enrich your experience and will give it that intimate and personal scent a good memory alone has.