The Pampas Wines Blog
We want to be a source of information and news for wine enthusiasts. We are delighted to share our knowledge and passion for wine, especially Argentinian wine…
Pampas Wines was recently profiled by Latino Life. You can read the whole interview here.
Argentina’s wine regions are widely dispersed from north to south but almost entirely confined to a relatively narrow strip at the western edge of the country bordering the foothills of the great Andes mountain range, leading to unique tasting wines from a relatively high altitude. The climate is predominantly semi-desert with annual rainfall rarely above 250mm, less than a third of that seen in Bordeaux. Water for irrigation is available from the rivers and channels that run down from the Andes. The seasons are well defined, allowing the vines plenty of time to rest, reducing the risk of fungal diseases.
The northern wine-making regions in Argentina are Jujuy, Salta, Catamarca and La Rioja, all beautiful areas responsible for some of the most fantastic wines of Argentina.
Distinct from its northern counterpart, the wines from southern regions are wholly unique, and need to be experienced several times to grasp their complex flavours. The southern wine-making regions in Argentina are San Juan, Mendoza and Patagonia (Neuqúen and Rio Negro).
As Argentina’s second most cultivated red variety, Bonarda is behind only Malbec in terms of area under vine.
Great as a single varietal but also a wonderful grape for blending, Cabernet Sauvignon is a truly classic international grape variety that responds extremely well to the climate and soil of Argentina. Much like other grapes, its style is highly dependent on where it is grown.
Taking advantage of the unique geographical heights of Mendoza, Chardonnay from other nations will seem comparatively disappointing compared to our selection of wines. In contrast to the green apple flavours produced by the climate of Northern France, the moderate Argentinian climate produces flavours of citrus and stone/melon fruit. As a result of this refreshing sharpness, unoaked Argentinian Chardonnay goes well with white fish, salads, or hors d’oeuvres, as well as drinking very well on its own as an aperitif.
With its distinctive taste and velvety texture, Malbec is undoubtedly the most famous of all Argentinian grapes and accounts for a substantial amount of Britain’s Argentinian imported wine.
Despite the suitability of this classic Bordeaux grape to Argentina’s climate, there isn’t a great deal of Merlot grown in Argentina at the moment. However, its production is increasing, along with its popularity. This in turn creates a classic and quality wine, instantly recognisable due to its red fruit flavours, oak-infused hints of toast, coffee, vanilla and overall nuttiness.
Pinot Noir is usually light in colour with generally lower levels of tannin than most other red varieties and a certain sweet fruitiness. In Argentina, the typical flavours are red cherry, strawberry, a little blackberry and vanilla from oak influence. Whereas the Cabernet Sauvignon needs relatively warm weather to flourish, the Pinot Noir is known as a cooler-climate grape, excelling in much milder conditions. It is a difficult and variable grape, demanding much of both the vine grower and winemaker and is much lighter than the other classic red varieties, so much so in fact, that it should be possible to see through a glass of Pinot Noir.
Classically, Syrah is known to make some very big bodied wines. This beautiful grape typically contains black fruit flavours such as blackberry and black cherry. It is also famous for its peppery finish, with some Syrahs even seeming slightly vegetal. Furthermore, if it has been oak aged, this process will probably add notes of chocolate and coffee into the bottle.
Despite its being the signature white grape of Argentina and a quality wine, most people have never heard of Torrontés. This crisp, dry white wine is unique to Argentina, excelling in the high altitudes of the northern Salta region. Typically, the best Torrontés is grown at an altitude of over 6,000 feet.
Having started as a result of Spanish colonisation in the 16th century, wine-making has an extremely long history in Argentina.
South American wine, particularly that from Argentina, stands alongside the best in the world. The dry, sunny, desert climate enjoyed by much of Argentina plays a huge part in ensuring the overall quality of Argentinian wine.