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New World wines: Argentina

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ARGENTINA WINES

The historical record of how winemaking started in Argentina as far back in the late 16th century when Spanish vines were brought into the country by Spanish missionaries and conquistadors. Though the history of winemaking is not as vibrant as that of its counterparts like France and Italy, they made it up to standard through the quality of wines they produce. What really favored winemaking in Argentina apart from the great growing regions? Tthe beautiful weather and the soil nature of the country. Argentina is so blessed with longer sunny seasons than cold seasons. The longer photoperiod allows for early grape maturity and also with the best flavor. In complement to the weather factor, Argentine soils are fertile and well cared for. Most wines respond to the quality of fruits produced by Argentine viticulturists.

In the world of winemaking, Argentina is stunningly rising as one of the most popular producers and exporters of red wine. Argentina is the largest in South America taking more than 45% of the continent’s production and 5th in the world after Italy, France, Spain, and the USA. Argentina wine industry is growing especially in its export value to the international market.

The Argentine wine industry is dominated by popular wine producers from Europe and America producing their wines using sophisticated technologies. You will find Familia Zuccardi, Colome, Bodegas Salentein, Trapiche, and Familia Schroeder. Argentina’s wine industry has been quite impressive with just about 1,300 wineries with small land area and less populated. These wineries produce exceptional wine tastes that compete with other finest wines from its top counterparts. Subsequently, Argentina has won awards in several international competitions. The largest one is the Decanter World Wine Awards (DWWA) 2018 edition where Argentina won 378 medals.

Argentine wines offered in a variety of red and white varieties, are among the best wines to include in your collections. Argentina is popular in winemaking for its most sought Red Malbec brand. Other red wines include Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot. If you are in search of white wines, go for Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling.

There are three principal winemaking regions in Argentina – The Mandoza, San Juan and La Rioja.

The Mendoza region has been the most important wine regions since the start of the industry. This is because it produces more than 60% of the country’s total production. The first French vines in the region were grown in 1880 by a French botanist. Some varieties were also introduced by winemakers from Italy and Spain. Mendoza is naturally dry with less water, but thanks to the impressive physical geography of the Andes that surround the region to the west. In the hot summer months, the Andes provide water from melting snow and cool breezes at night.

San Juan is another leading region in the ranking of second wine production after Mendoza. Although the environment is much hotter and drier than Mendoza. San Juan is popular for the quality of the production of high-quality red varieties of Syrah. This region is also known for the production of spirits and vermouth.

The La Rioja region is known to produce more red wines than other varieties. About 75% of the wines produced in the region are red grape varieties, others are whites and rosés. Majority of the production comes from crushing a Spanish grape variety, Tempranillo to produce a single wine from the Rioja vineyard.

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