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.
Wine tasting did that for me. Seriously.
How can I NOT feel like a classy lady while holding onto a good glass of red wine in a wine connoisseur’s cellar?
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).
The process goes something like this (and I’m paraphrasing like a mofo):
Let it breathe. Luckily Nigel got on this the moment he came down to the cellar – even before the tasting really began.
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.
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.
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.
But I mean, that means it was a good night right?
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?