TastingsSunday, February 5, 2012
Wine tasting can be thirsty work
Thirsty expats looking to delve deeper into the Argentine wine world have plenty of options when it comes to local wine tastings. Whether it’s a multi-stop tour or an intimate gathering in a private space, there are options for all tastes and budgets.
In a laid-back and friendly atmosphere, Time Out’s Argentine and British sommeliers — this week’s Expat Cara Lester — accompany small groups through the streets of Palermo, dropping into a handful of the city’s finest restaurants such as Don Julio to sample a selection of wines (red, white and sparkling). In total there are seven samples from four leading wineries. Tours are held twice weekly and fill up fast, so it’s best to reserve in advance.
British sommelier Nigel Tollerman has gained much acclaim for his 0800-VINO wine club and exclusive tastings. The wine club allows you to set personalized preferences in everything from price range to specific bodegas, and he does the rest. Clients receive special promotions as well as invitations to exclusive events and discounts with affiliates.
Anuva Wines, founded by American expat Dan Karlin, is another boutique wine club that hosts tastings in Buenos Aires. Lesser-known wines from smaller bodegas are featured at their intimate tastings and are paired with delicious local tapas. Wine tasting basics are covered, but the staff is knowledgeable and generous with information. It’s a fun way to meet those passing through the city or other expats interested in learning about wine.
The Fierro Hotel in Palermo Hollywood also hosts tastings, serving wines chosen by the president of the Argentine Sommelier Association, Andrés Rosberg, and in-house sommelier Martín Bruno. The tastings are limited to seven people or less, ensuring an intimate and enjoyable experience with some of the most knowledgeable experts around.
Aldo’s Vinoteca in San Telmo provides an ambitious tasting atmosphere and boasts nine sommeliers — the most of any local restaurant. The wine list is a whopping 42-pages long, so prepare to be overwhelmed. Private tastings pair three or four wines with tapas and can be scheduled any time. Group tastings are held on Thursdays.
For those on a budget, Lo de Joaquín Alberdi in Palermo offers affordable tastings that include four glasses of wine along with a simple picada. Also in Palermo, the Experiencia Fin del Mundo offers daily tastings and with lesser-known varietals. The restaurant is affiliated with the Bodega Fin del Mundo in Patagonia. You get four glasses of wine and a variety of small dishes; wines can be chosen to accommodate any budget.