Join the tour: Bodega del Tupun in the Uco Valley, Mendoza

Spoiler alert: I could kill for that Pinot Noir!

This bodega comes to me as a surprise. Literally! Let’s do a bit of story telling here before I give you the hard facts and a tour of the bodega.

One sunny morning I take the bus from Mendoza to Tupungato to meet Javier Aller who is supposed to show me his wine and where he makes it. When I get off the bus Javier is already waiting for me and with him a friend, Diego, who turns out to be our translator. What a great surprise and thank God for that! The next surprise comes a few minutes later: Javier drives pass Bodega del Tupun, the oldest winery in the region, as he explains, and drives right into their parking lot where apparently he arranged a tour for me by winemaker Ariel Angelini. I am thrilled and excited when greeted by Ariel and even more thrilled and excited once we enter the old bodega building that dates back to the 1920s. Javier later shows me his wine production as well, this I will tell you in another blog post.


Let’s start with the hard facts, quick and dirty, about Bodega del Tupun before I give you the tour: Continue reading

Visiting Bodega Nanni in Cafayate

Cafayate, a small town of roughly 13 000 inhabitants in the province of Salta, is the wine capital in the Northwest of Argentina. Surrounded by spectacular mountain ranges, it is home to numerous Bodegas. Some of them are even in the city centre and therefore easily accessible. One of the bodegas we visit is Bodega Nanni, the only certified organic winery in Cafayate.



We get there in the afternoon and are nicely greetd by the Bodega staff. After a relaxing time in the beautifully set out garden surrounded by Tannat, Torrontes and Cabernet Sauvignion grapes, we get a tour through the winery. This is what we learn: Continue reading

Alejandro Barrientos on being a sommelier and current trends in Argentinian wine industry

“Learning from the best”


Alejandro Barrientos

For many people the 21st of October 2015 maybe be just a normal day like any other normal day. But for me, the 21st of October 2015 is a special day. It is the day I am in Buenos Aires to meet Alejandro Barrientos for an interview. Alejandro, originally from Spain, was introduced to me as one of the best sommeliers in Argentina and I am super excited and a little nervous to meet this great man. And when I finally meet him, I am impressed by his kindness, his modesty, his great knowledge fo wine and sense of humour.

We meet in his wine shop, Sacra Vinotecas, in downtown Buenos Aires. The wine shop is held in white and purple colours, freshly cut flowers are on the tables, wine bottles are displayed along the walls . The atmosphere is elegant but at the same time very personal. Alejandro Barrientos opened the wine shop after having worked as the head sommelier in one of Argentinas best hotels. He and the hotel were so good, that he even served the king of Spain! This information does not make me less nervous, I must admit.

Read on to find out how Alejandro Barrientos has become one of the best sommeliers, what advice he has got for you on becoming a good sommelier, what he has got to say about wine growing in Argentina and overall about his love for wine. Enjoy! Continue reading

10 things worth knowing about wine growing in Argentina

I am writing this blog entry at London Heathrow Airport. I shouldn’t be here. I should be in Argentina, sitting in a wine bar in Buenos Aires rather than on a bench in Terminal 5 listening to a voice very similiar to ex-Spice Girls’s Mel C reminding us that unattended luggage will be removed and destroyed. Good to know.

The Regent variety. Soon to be ready for harvest.

But British Airways didn’t want to take me on their flight last night and rebooked me on today’s flight. Therefore, I have plenty of time to read about wine growing in Argentina and share the most important facts and figures with you. So, let’s read and learn a little. Continue reading

Let’s get chemical!

Brix, PH, Titratable acidity – things to do in the lab before harvest

View over the vineyards to the Marmara Sea.

View over the vineyards to the Marmara Sea.

I am currently spending some time working at the Chateau Kalpak in Turkey where we wait for the harvest to start any minute. While waiting we enjoy the nice view out of our window but cannot help asking ourselves: What goes on in the lab down in the cellar and what implications does it have for the harvest? And, above all, for the wine? Continue reading