Located in the western region of Argentina, Mendoza is a province famous for its verdant rolling vineyards, wine tours and world-class wine. Sunny and dry, the Mendoza region is perfect for grape cultivation and the production of delicious wines. Home to numerous world famous wineries, Mendoza is today known as the “wine capital” of Argentina. Be it a deep ruby cabernet or a smooth textured merlot or a chardonnay with character, wine lovers are bound to find something here to titillate their palate. For something authentically Argentine, opt for the rich and tasty malbec red wine.
Immerse yourself in Mendoza destination by going on a winery tour visiting local wineries, or on an olive oil tour with some olive tasting. You can also take a city tour or explore the region on foot. During your tour of the wineries of Mendoza, be sure to include a visit to Enoteca Museo del Vino, the wine museum. You can also visit the cellars and vineyards of Lopez, Maipu, Santa Ana and Escorihuela.
But there’s much more to this fascinating province than just its grapes. Mendoza’s culture is traditionally Argentine in a manner that is both accessible and grand. Mendoza celebrates the culture of the region with festivals and events that both enchant and delight. Elaborate tango shows and music concerts keep this city vibrant the whole year round.
Fiesta Nacional de la Vendimia is the city’s largest festival, which makes for a fitting celebration of the major industry in the region. The wine festival begins in January and February with a series of regional events that feature music, dance and parades and of course wine tasting. The main event starts on the first Saturday of March and continues until the start of April, culminating in the crowning of the Queen of Vendimia and an award ceremony.
As with anywhere else in Argentina, Mendoza has a rich and varied culinary tradition. Local specialties include “locro” a stew or soup dish served with hominy, often made of a variety of ingredients including sausage, cow intestine and vegetables, topped with scallions and garnished with cumin, paprika and chili pepper.
During your guided tour around Mendoza, try some “choripan,” a sausage sandwich sold by street vendors. Meat lovers will also enjoy the “asado de tira” barbecued spare ribs with Chimichurri. Chimichurri is a delicious sauce blended from olive oil, wine vinegar, parsley, garlic and roasted capsicum to provide the perfect complement to succulent Argentine barbecue. For dessert, try the alfajor a sandwich of “dulce de leche”, a rich, creamy caramel-like spread, spread in between two soft biscuits.
Aside from the splendid cuisine, Mendoza offers an abundance of things to do that relate to its culture. A Mendoza tour guide can take you to numerous museums that give insights into its history, such as the natural history museum, the historical regional foundation museum and the national wine museum. Teatro Independencia is open for opera and musical theater performances.
Nothing beats a day of relaxation at one of Mendoza’s parks. The parks are a lush refuge ideal for sunbathing, exercising or spending a serene afternoon by the lake. Drinking mate herbal tea at a park with friends or family is a sacred Mendoza tradition that can last for hours. You can also go hiking up a hill to enjoy sweeping views of the mountains and city below.
The plazas of Mendoza host street food vendors, artisanal markets and food festivals the year round. If you are in a plaza during the morning hours, be sure to get a coffee with tortita from the men selling breakfast from their bicycles.
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