WINE SCHOOL 25 - 31 May 2015

REGION: Argentina > Salta

Salta is an off-the-scale outlier of a wine region. In Salta, vines are cultivated far closer to the equator than in any other major wine region. The reason this is possible is that the vineyards are also far higher up than anywhere else in the world, thereby mitigating the excessive heat levels that would normally be found at these latitudes. Starting more than a mile above sea level, Salta is higher than most European mountains. The range of altitudes is also vast; exceeding the distance between the highest and lowest of all major wine regions anywhere in the world.

Key red grapes: Malbec
Key white grapes: Torrontés


GRAPE: Torrontés

Argentina's signature white wine grape, Torrontés is actually used to describe a number of related grape varieties including Torrontés Mendocino, Torrontés Sanjuanino and - most commonly - Torrontés Riojano.

Torrontés wines tend to be crisp and refreshing with an unusual and distinctive aroma profile: a vague floral note with a zing of grapefruit or ginger. They call to mind a simpler, less flamboyant Gewürztraminer - ideal as an aperitif or with spicy food. The wines generally aren't meant for the long-haul and should be drunk within a year or two of bottling - the sooner the better.

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Next week in WINE SCHOOL: Sicily (Italy) & Nero d'Avola

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