Varieties

White

Torrontés: Being the only wine variety considered 100% Argentine, Torrontés is cultivated in all the wine regions of the country, from Salta to Rio Negro. Its origin has been an issue of broad-ranging discussion amongst many wine experts, but its relationship to the Europe Mediterranean Muscat is undeniable. A proof of this bond is its fragrant and unmistakable aroma, resembling roses, jasmine and geranium, with occasional spicy essences. The first cultivation of Torrontes dates back from the times of the Spanish Conquerors, and ever since it became one of the most cultivated grape variety in the country. Recently, it has been elaborated as sparkling and fortified wine, with excellent results in both cases. Torrontes produces a unique symbiosis with spicy food and Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai dishes. It pairs marvelously with Northern Argentinean food, such as the typical empanadas and and corn stew.

Chardonnay: Chardonnay holds the first place among classic white grape varieties. It is much appreciated in Argentina for its capacity for good ripening and because it can be used to make a wide range of wines, from the bases for sparkling wines to the full-bodied varietals fermented in oak barrels to the fresh and elegant wines without oak. Chardonnay is a profound, delicate and remarkably persistent wine. It can be extremely complex, expressing the character of the terroir in which it was grown. In general terms, it is characterized by tropical notes when it comes from warm regions and by aromas of minerals and fresh vegetables when it comes from colder regions. It is light yellow in color, with green hues, and its aromas are reminiscent of green apples, lemons and grapefruit, among others.

Sauvignon Blanc: The finest white variety. It requires care and wisdom during production. It is an old variety, not much developed in Argentina due to its peculiar vegetative behavior. However, its cultivation has expanded significantly over the last years. Sauvignon Blanc is a dry and fresh wine, with good body and remarkable acidity. Of great personality, it sometimes has smoky tones and slightly spicy flavor. It is yellow in color with green and golden hues, and it offers herbaceous aromas that evoke honey, pineapple, mango, gunpowder, asparagus and pink grapefruit. This wine makes an excellent aperitif.

Chenin: Very fine variety which has historically adapted very well to Argentine terroirs. Nevertheless, it is rarely found in varietals. It is mostly used to add freshness and acid structure to many white blends. Its analogy with white peach peel is mainly used to describe its aroma.

Viognier: Of late, Argentine winemakers have begun to grow this variety and tried different vinifications with it. It is a very aromatic and elegant variety. It is suitable for production in stainless steel vats and for fermentation and aging in oak barrels. In fresh wines, some flower and tropical fruit notes are present, as well as an unmistakable caramel descriptor. When stored in oak, almond aromas develop after a few years.

Red

Malbec: The most emblematic Argentinean wine is made of this variety. Born in Cahors, in the south of France, it was brought to Argentina in the mid XIX century and it adapted well to every wine region in the country.

It began to be massively cultivated, due to its sanity, vigor and its potential for top quality wines. Up to these days, Malbec has been subject of many elaboration methods, which led to the most varied styles of wine, from young and simple wines to the most complex and aged ones, including roses, sparkling and fortified wines. In every case, its primary aromas resemble ripe prunes and sometimes mint, while in the mouth it is softly meaty and rounded. Malbec is "the red wine" to pair with roasted beef, stews, pasta with tomato sauce and cheese, game meats and hard cheeses.

Cabernet Sauvignon: This king of red wines displays subtle differences depending on its region of origin. It is a harsh wine, with marked acidity and strong presence of tannins, which proves to be tasty and full-bodied at the time of optimum maturation.

In the North-west of the country, Cabernet Sauvignon gets astonishing color intensity and aromas, which remind you of blackberries and green pepper. Within Cuyo this wine varietal gets fruitier, with ripe cherry hints; while in the south of the country aromas get more intense, developing mineral and earthy bouquets. Barrel and bottle ageing lend a particular elegance, with tobacco, leather and spices aromas.

Bonarda: It is the second most cultivated red variety in Argentina and one of the most traditional ones. It is characterized by its depth of color. Due to its density, vigor and low cost, it has always been within the group of the most economical wines, though it is also vinified as a varietal.

Bonarda produces frank and honest wines, with good body and color, fruity raspberry aroma and subtle aniseed flavor. When it is used in blends, it adds chromatic intensity and fruit notes. Its sound structure provides good oak-aging potential.

Syrah: Historically, Syrah was used in blends, but it began to be grown extensively for vinification on its own during the last decade. It is a light and fresh wine that lingers in the mouth. It adapts very well to regions with intense insolation, such as the Tulum Valley in San Juan and Mendoza's eastern departments. The coldest regions of Mendoza, such as the Uco Valley, produce well-structured wines which are suitable for aging. In warmer regions, wines offer good color and strong fruit expression. This variety has intense colors, full texture and aromas that range from floral, when wine is young, to spicy and animal after oak and bottle maturation.

Merlot: Merlot is one of the red varieties that has recently been promoted in Argentina and has great potential. It is a fine grapevine that adapts best to the high and cool Argentine terroirs, especially the Uco Valley and Patagonia. With low production and good vineyard management, Merlot translates into a delicate wine, with intense albeit not overpowering palate. Its aromas recall sweet pepper, cedar, blackcurrant and spices.

Pinot Noir: This is an old and noble variety frequently used as base for the best sparkling wines. It is vinified as a white wine, though some top quality red varietals can also be obtained. As it requires cold weather, it has found in Mendoza and Neuquen the ideal spots for its growth. It is very soft, fresh and fruity, with good, albeit not aggressive, acidity that leads to a long-lasting finish on the palate. This variety mutates more easily than the others, and so there are many different Pinot grape clones. Its color ranges from ruby to intense red, and it maintains its characteristic raspberry, sugar beet and earthy aromas in every case.

Tempranillo: After good vinification and Spanish-style aging in American oak, Tempranillo achieves exceptional qualities and excellent potential for bottle maturation. This wine has medium alcohol content, and is well-balanced, tasty and pleasant in the mouth, with chocolate and vanilla notes from oak storage. It has a deep ruby red color with violet hues. Its aromas evoke plums and blackcurrants, nuts, cherries and raspberries, freshly-mowed grass, complemented by notes of tobacco, coffee and cocoa.