On October 22 2014, Wines of Argentina hosted a tasting at Beverly Hills’ Peninsula Hotel to meet and learn from visiting producers, owners and winemakers. The room was treated to an impressive selection of wines.
Patricio Gouguenheim developed a taste for wine early in life, likely inherited from his French parents. He remembers enjoying a wine spritzer with every meal as early as seven years old. Many years later in 1999, Gouguenheim’s financial job brought him to the Mendoza, Argentina area. Three years after his arrival in Mendoza, Argentina’s fiscal collapse spurred his career change. Even as most people were leaving the wine business, Gouguenheim thought it was the time for offerings of the Mendoza region to shine. He found an old, established winery in the Uco Valley, just over 43 miles from Mendoza. Gouguenheim Winery was born, and it is now one of the highest quality wineries in Argentina.
A congruence of factors contribute to the distinct characteristics of Gouguenheim wine. The western-central climate of Argentina and landscape factor heavily. The area experiences an amazing 320 sunny days a year. The vineyard sits 3,600 feet above sea level, irrigated by melting water from the Andes mountains. The temperature difference between daytime and nighttime is an amazing 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Most Gouguenheim red wines are aged between four and twelve months. The Malbec in particular is aged for 4 months inside American and French oak. The captivating bouquet features “scents of ripe fruits, plums, black cherry, black currant, chocolates and violets.” Its color is a deep red with hints of purple, and its long finish is complemented by soft tannins. For those that prefer fruity whites, another standout is the Chardonnay. Fermentation for the bright yellow wine occurs both in stainless steel tanks and oak, which lends it a slightly oaky flavor. The rich Chardonnay is crisp and fragrant, with scents of apple, pear, and tropical fruits.
Gouguenheim wine is distributed and enjoyed in fifteen countries internationally.