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Mendoza Report, part 1: What’s new in Mendoza?

>> Tuesday, September 07, 2010

With the snow capped Andes in the background and an extremely blue sky, Mendoza, the largest wine region in Argentina, is a magnificent sight. The climate is nice and warm. It is easy to get ripe grapes and powerful wines with a lot of alcohol. Wines that are appreciated all over the world. But making powerful wines is not enough anymore for the more ambitious of the Mendoza producers. José Alberto Zuccardi says what a lot of producers think today: “We also need to look for identity, especially for our top wines, it’s very important. We want to have powerful wines, but with the elegance from the old world.”

Argentina is a country with a long wine tradition. It’s a New World - country with a certain old world feeling to it. It has always been the New World country with the biggest wine consumption, maybe not surprising considering the Italian and Spanish influence.

The wine export has grown dramatically over the last few years and the quality of the wines has improved, also dramatically. “Consumers are changing”, says Guillermo Yaciofano, vineyard manager at Trapiche. “They are more knowledgeable today and they want interesting wines. So we need to change our wines. We need to find the right location for each grape. It is warm everywhere in Mendoza, but there are regions that are more or less hot.”

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