Argentina, A Wine Lover's Paradise - The Must-Try Wines
Argentina may be newer to the wine game than many countries, but in a short amount of time, it has established itself as the home of brilliant wines.
While Malbec put the land of the tango on the wine map, there are several other grapes which have piqued the interest (and palates) of wine lovers worldwide. If you're on the hunt for fantastic value wine, Argentina is the place to start your search.
Malbec, the One That Started it All
Although it's sorely underused in its native country of France, Malbec reaches new heights in Argentina. A combination of a sunny climate, high altitude vineyards, and dry desert conditions make for ultra-concentrated wines full of plummy, jammy flavours with a touch of chocolate and cocoa. The best of the best spend time in oak, giving the wines a lovely baking spice-vanilla character that makes Argentina's Malbecs ideal for sipping. It's rounder and more velvety than the likes of Cabernet Sauvignon or Shiraz, making it a seriously easy-drinking wine.
This Italian grape comes in second behind Malbec for Argentina's most planted grape. Compared with Malbec, you'll find Bonarda a veritable fruit basket of blueberries, black cherries, and plum, with a touch of spice and even a lovely violet floral aroma. This aromatic grape makes ripe wines which are balanced out by bright acidity and a medium body, courtesy of high altitude vineyards and a pronounced difference between day and night temperatures. Fruity, juicy Bonarda is a perfect partner for your barbecues, especially with grilled ribs, chicken, or a perfectly cooked burger.
Classic Cabernet Sauvignon
The ever-popular Cabernet Sauvignon has made its way to Argentina where producers are making phenomenal wines. This classic French variety makes rich, ripe, with a touch of smoke and cocoa. It's incredibly complex and almost too easy to drink. Almost. If you like Bordeaux, think of this as a riper fruitier version that you can enjoy with stews, lambs, at the weekend or as a mid-week mini vacation.
Shiraz or Syrah, if you prefer has also found a new outpost down Argentina way. Winemakers here bottle Shiraz either on its own as a varietal or blended with other varieties like fellow French grape Cabernet Sauvignon or Bonarda. It's a spicy, lush treat that is marvellous with any meat dish, but we're especially fond of it with a ribeye steak.
Torrontés is Argentina's very own unique grape. It's elegant and perfumed, high in acid and minerality. Torrontés is a must-try wine if you're a fan of aromatic grapes like Riesling or Gewürztraminer, or simply are in the mood to try something uniquely Argentinian. If you're enjoying a picnic or keen for a light something to enjoy during the week, you'd be hard-pressed to do better than a refreshing glass of Torrontés.
We can safely say that Argentina truly has it all when it comes to great value wine. As a newer country on the wine scene, it will only continue to develop, improve, and delight wine lovers. With its wealth of food-friendly wines which are brilliant for all occasions, Argentina is a wine lover's dream.