Updated: May 13, 2020
Maipú is the oldest of the three wine regions in Mendoza. It’s also the smallest, with only about 20 wineries. That’s probably why there are fewer companies that offer tours to the area. We enjoyed a nice tour of the wine of Maipú with Kahuak, although the number of people on it was larger than we expected.
The first winery we visited was Bodega Trapiche. Founded in 1883, it is Argentina’s largest wine exporter and one of the icons of Argentina wine architecture. We toured the main facility, which was built in 1912.
The winery closed in the 1970s due to Argentina’s economic crisis. When it reopened, it moved into the international market and the production of reserve as well as table wines. Its vineyards encompass 2,470 acres from different terroirs in Argentina. The wine tasting was held on the winery’s deck, with the Andes Mountains in the background.
Costa y Pampa 2018, Sauvignon Blanc 😊+
Fond de Cave 2017, 100% Malbec 😊+
Grand Reserve Medalla 2016, a blend of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc 😊😊
Bodega SinFin is a family-owned winery that has been operating since 1975. It’s a boutique winery that also sells its grapes to other wineries that need them. “Sin fin” means “no end,” referring to the corkscrew-like tool used to make sausage. The tasting was in the winery’s tasting cellar, and led by Augustina (“Gus”), one of the funniest guides we’ve encountered.
Gus provided a great deal of helpful information about the wine of Maipú in both English and Spanish and told a variety of colorful jokes which kept the whole room laughing throughout the tour.
Guarda Sauvignon Blanc 2018, the winery’s only white wine 😊+
Guarda Bonarda 2017, (the Bonarda grape is a 3,000-year-old grape varietal) 😊++
Guarda Malbec 2017 😊😊
Gran Guarda Cabernet Franc (reserve) 2015 😊😊
Familia Zuccardi/Bodega Santa Julia
We then traveled to Familia Zuccardi, which operates the winery Bodega Santa Julia, an olive oil factory called Zuelo, and a restaurant, Pan y Oliva. The Zuccardi family first experimented with irrigation in Mendoza in 1950, planted its first vines in 1963, and established Julia in 1982. After a tour of the premises, we enjoyed a three-course lunch with wine pairings.
Santa Julia 2019, 100% Torrontes, Argentina’s white grape varietal 😊
Santa Julia Reserva 2018, 100% Tempranillo (the first winery in Mendoza to use this Spanish grape) 😊++
Santa Julia Reserva 2018, 100% Cabernet Sauvignon 😊++
Julia by Santa Julia 2019, a sparkling wine 😊+
Since the winery also operates Zuelo, we were also able to try two of the olive oils it produces. Olive oil tastings are a bit different from wine tastings. First, one cups the glass that the oil is in to warm it slightly. Next, smell the oil to discern the different herbal aromas and spices, and then suck in the olive oil so that optimally the tasting is at the back of the throat.
We tried one olive oil that was a blend of four different olives, which was softer and slightly spicy. The other was made from a single type of olive tree, and was fruitier and spicier with a hint of tomato. Excellent!
We hope you find these suggestions about the wine of Maipú helpful. For more information on how to divvy up your time in Mendoza’s wine regions, go to our post about prioritizing your trip to Mendoza. Salud!
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