Monday, January 22, 2007

Destination Argentina: The World Wine Tour Begins Today

Ladies and gentlemen we are about to depart for Argentina. Please ensure that your carry-on items are securely stowed, and that your seat backs and tray tables are in their full upright positions. Oh, and get ready to drink some wine!

Argentina is one of the world's top five largest wine producing nations. Argentine wines are made from grapes such as traditional Chardonnay, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and also varieties like Tempranillo, Bonarda, Barbera, Torront├ęs and Malbec.

Demarcated Wine Regions
This is Argentina's powerhouse, accounting for over 80% of total production (or to put it another way, over half of the entire wine production of South America). Producers in this region make fine Cabernet, Merlot and Chardonnay with increasingly impressive Syrahs and Malbecs.

Sitting in the very far north of the country, Salta is a region of generally high quality with fine Cabernets Sauvignons and, Torront├ęs wines.

Rio Negro
This region lies at the southern end of wine production, in the fringes of Patagonia. Rio Negro is earmarked by many as one to watch, not only for cool-climate varieties like Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, but high quality sparkling wines.

San Juan and La Rioja
These long-standing regions still produce plenty of wine, but as yet mostly of mediocre quality for purely local consumption.

Let this info soak in for a while...we'll be posting a wine rating later today, so stay tuned. Also, be sure to vote for where you think our tour should go next week, by clicking on the poll in the upper right corner. You can vote as many times as you'd like.

That's all for now. Remember to swirl, sniff and swig. Cheers!

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