Food, Photography, Review, South America, Travel

Feelin’ Fancy at a Wine Tasting in Buenos Aires

things to do in buenos aires

There are times in a backpacker’s life where you just have to splurge on something fancy – something that makes you feel like you are cultured – or an adult (not mutually exclusive). If you’re looking for things to do in Buenos Aires, we may have found a perfect fit.

things to do in buenos aires

Wine tasting did that for me. Seriously.

things to do in buenos aires

How can I NOT feel like a classy lady while holding onto a good glass of red wine in a wine connoisseur’s cellar?

things to do in buenos aires0800Vino-11

But there we were, in 0800 Vino, being taught the magical ways of deciphering tastes of wine by the knowledgeable and very personable Nigel Tollerman. Not only did he leave his home to pursue a passion of his, but he is damn successful at it. We were lucky enough to be invited on a heavy pour night (what can I say, I was excited when I heard that) of Cabernet Sauvignons and a Cabernet Franc (which I had never even heard of).

wine tasting in buenos aires
This is Nigel. He is a badass.

The process goes something like this (and I’m paraphrasing like a mofo):

wine tasting in argentina

Let it breathe. Luckily Nigel got on this the moment he came down to the cellar – even before the tasting really began.

things to do in buenos aires

Does it look a pretty color? The more transparent, the younger the wine.

Smell it. What flavors do you smell? As we are new at this, all I could smell was wine. And alcohol. Yeah… it is going to take a while before I’m going to be able to decipher. Oh well, more wine for me?

Swish it in your mouth to taste the flavors. I did a one swish, knock it back. Yes, a waste – but I know it will take a while before I can taste everything and I didn’t want it to get all saliva-y sitting on my tongue while I magically wait for something to happen. The one thing I could tell right away was the different dryness-es of the wines.

wine tasting

We tried the following:

Del Fin del Mundo – Chile – Cabernet Sauvignon – a favorite of the crowd even though it was a lower quality wine – Smoky, Vanilla, Coconut

Punto Final – Mendoza, Argentina – Cabernet Sauvignon – Peppery, sweet, juicy

La Madrid Reserve – Cabernet Franc – Anis, dark, viscous – I wasn’t a fan. Neither was Shaun. I think this was the only one we threw the rest into the bucket.

Huarpe Taymente – Cabernet Sauvignon – Scored 90 Nigel Tolerman points (which, from what I understand, was his highest ranked wine). Yes ladies and gents, he has his own scoring system. I wish I could see the excel file for that one!

Tapiz – Cabernet Sauvignon – I think at this point I had had a little too much wine and my notes got really sparse.

Palo Alto – Limited Production – Cabernet Sauvignon – I wish I wrote more about it. I think I was a fan, but not my favorite.

wine tasting notes

There is one major suggestion for people going to a wine tasting for the first time (in Argentina). While the rest of the world swishes and spits, these people like to down the wine. That being said, make sure to eat something before you head in. As I didn’t think that entirely through, I was a little wobbly walking out of the place.

things to do in buenos aires
The beautiful and witty @thetravelchica. (Thanks for the heads up on the wine tasting!)

But I mean, that means it was a good night right?

things to do in buenos aires

things to do in buenos aires

Disclosure: This was NOT a comped experience. I genuinely appreciated the knowledge and respect that 0800 Vinos extended to us newbies and we had an excellent time… dare I say probably my most favorite experience in Buenos Aires?

29 thoughts on “Feelin’ Fancy at a Wine Tasting in Buenos Aires”

  1. You did a great job taking notes and remembering everything. I think I was a bit wobbly heading out of there too.

    You make a very good point about the Argentines not being the swish and spit types, which is another reason I enjoy this country so much 🙂

  2. Yum Punto Final.

    I found their wines to be generally quite enjoyable for a very reasonable price.

    Did you try Andeluna Malbec or Aguijon de Abeja Malbec? Stellar wines.

    1. It is hard to say any wines are expensive in Argentina. Their super “expensive” wines are still only $20 or so. <3

      I don't think I had the pleasure of trying those. We looked like alcoholics with the amount of wine bottles we took to the trash. We played, "this bottle looks interesting" at the grocery store when it came to trying new wines.

  3. I agree, it woud be hard not to feel fancy when you are sniffing and swishing fabulous wines in a connoisseur’s cellar. Sounds like a perfect day!

  4. My notes for the last wines at a tasting usually look something like that 🙂 It sounds like a really fun event!

  5. Gotta get a little fancy from time to time 🙂

    I’m no good at tasting all of the different things you’re supposed to recognize either, but I love when someone tells you what you should be tasting or it’s written on the paper. My tasting notes usually turn into a ranking or various amounts of smiley faces and exclamation points!

    1. SERIOUSLY. It is good for the heart and mind. As for the tasting, it would take me a while for my taste buds to develop like that. More power to people who CAN decipher.

      I can do it with beer!

  6. Looks lovely. My problem is that I always have the urge to drink wine, so would probably do wine tasting sessions every day if it wasn’t for the budget. The most annoying thing ever happened to me is when I thought I’d be smart and save money by buying wine in a supermarket rather than a bar. That was until I realized that I didn’t have a cork screw back in my hotel. Doh! 🙂

    1. That would get a bit pricey but completely doable. Or, you can just head to the grocery store and buy $5-$10 bottles of wine and just do it yourself lol!

  7. What a fantastic event! 🙂 I agree completely. We DO need to treat ourselves now and then. 🙂 I did a similar wine-tasting a couple of weeks ago here in Australia. I’m still smiling when I think of it. 🙂

  8. Looks like a great event. Are wine prices still reasonable there? We stopped by a grocery on the way to fly back to the States and paid like $3 for really excellent ones. I think we bought like 10 bottles that day.

  9. I’ve heard SO MANY great things about Nigel! What a great experience!! Especially for 16 bucks! Is this located in capital?! If so, which neighborhood?! GRACIAS!!

    1. This is located in Capital Federal (wow, I almost started typing completely in Spanish there) but honestly, I don’t remember what neighborhood – I know it had a lot of tango shops around. You can contact Nigel on their website (or friend them 0800 Vinos) to find out about the wine tastings.

  10. I love splurging on things like this when traveling! Sometimes we need a little something nice. And this definitely sounds like something nice. We need to do this in Maryland!!

  11. We even had a Robert Mondavi rep on the ship this time and got to have wine tastings in the middle of the Pacific Ocean on several occasions. Definitely not shabby!

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