There are many wine tour options for visitors to Argentina’s wine country. From bus tours to private guides, and from US$25 to US$300 per person, there are excursions for all tastes and budgets.
The Winery and Cipolletti Dam bus tour is at the lower end of the budget spectrum. This excursion departs daily from downtown Mendoza around 2:30 pm. The tour visits two very different wineries near the capital in order to compare their processes. One will be an industrial scale winery while the other will be a small artisan winery. Some of the wineries on this excursion include Bodegas López, Vistandes, Lagarde, St. Hubert, and Don Arturo. Once in the wineries, you will walk along the rows of stainless steel tanks and oak barrels while learning about the manufacturing process. After each visit there is an exclusive wine tasting of each winery’s different wines. The next stop on this excursion is an olive press where you can observe the production process of Virgin and Extra Virgin olive oil. The excursion also takes you to see the Cipolletti Dam, which provides the water to irrigate most of Mendoza’s vineyards. The last stop is a visit to the Church of Our Lady of the Carrodilla the Protector of the Vineyards, which houses a beautiful image of the Virgin dating from the eighteenth century. The excursion ends back in the city of Mendoza around 8:00 pm. Tickets are US$ 25 per person and can be purchased here.
The Wine Tours are private excursions for small groups of up to four people. The private tour offers a longer and more intimate introduction to Mendoza’s wine culture since you have the undivided attention of the guide and can stop for photos anytime you please. This excursion starts early in the morning because it covers hundreds of kilometers. You have the option of exploring the two to three wineries in the Lujan and Maipu valleys or three wineries in the Valle de Uco, each option is priced differently because of the enormous distances involved. During the winery tours you will learn about the winemaking process and have the opportunity to taste the different wines of each producer. Aside from wineries, these tours also visit the Cipolletti Dam and Our Lady of the Carrodilla the protector of the vineyards. The pricing of these tours is per vehicle, not per person. The prices range from US$147 to US$295 depending on the distance. For further information and rservations click here.
The Wine Routes are premium private excursions focusing on a single winery and its associated vineyards for a thorough oenological experience. Each tour includes a banquet lunch in the winery, as well as a sampling of their best wines. This is the best, safest, and most relaxed way to take in Mendoza’s wineries. You will be in the hands of experts, there is no rush, you won’t risk getting lost, and you can sample as much wine as you want since you won’t be getting behind the wheel. The following wineries are available for this tour:
The Lagarde Winery, founded in 1897, is an excellent high-end winery that values artisanship and preserves its traditions. The well maintained original buildings are excellent samples of Mendoza’s colonial architecture. Aas you wander around the winery, its ancient vineyards, its patios and the old house, you will be engulfed in an ambiance of nostalgia from a hundred years ago.
Cava de Cano Winery. The former residence of Don Guillermo Cano, the governor of Mendoza, who in 1936 established Argentina’s first National Harvest Festival, is now the refuge of the perfect combination of history, food and wine that delights the senses. Cava de Cano is a micro-winery and restaurant known for its Syrah.
The Belasco de Baquedano winery, situated at the foot of the Andes, is the Argentine arm of the Belasco family’s intercontinental wine empire. Belasco de Baquedano brands such as Loan, Swinto, and Rosa de Argentina are renowned internationally, especially in Europe and the United States.
The Salentein Winery and its vineyards in the upper Uco Valley are changing the face of Argentine viticulture while maintaining its traditions. Salentein continues in the footsteps of the Jesuit missionaries who began making wine here more than two centuries ago using Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc grapes.
The Lopez Winery was founded by José López Rivas who arrived in 1886 from the town of Algarrobo in Málaga, Spain, where his family cultivated vineyards and olive trees. Since 1898, he dedicated himself to continuing the family tradition of producing wine in casks of oak. Today the winery has planted 1100 ha. of vineyards specializing in the production of sherry, and champagne.
Los Toneles Bodegas y Viñedos was founded in 1890 by Don Angel Latino, an Italian immigrant who saw the regions potential for producing excellent wines. The name Los Toneles was adopted several years later and refers to its enormous wine making barrels which were, at the time, the largest in the region.
Prices for the premium Wine Route excursion range from US$96 to US$300 per person depending on the winery selected. For more information and reservations, click here.