Wine Regions of Argentina: Salta

(Photo by Tanenhaus)

Although Salta is most commonly known for its impressive landscapes and colorful indigenas, wine making in the region (as in most of Argentina) dates back to the sixteenth century, ever since Spanish Colonials inhabited the area.  Despite producing a smaller percentage of the country’s wine than other provinces such as Mendoza and San Juan, the viticulture activity of the area has increased in the last years, producing top wines that have acquired great acceptance in the local and international markets.

The two main areas of viticulture in Salta are Cafayate and further to the north Colomé, both in the stunning Calchaquí Valleys. The dry warm weather,  the irrigation from the valleys melt water  and nearby rivers and the arid rocky soil are favorable for the cultivation of fine grapes. Additionally, the vineyards are at very high altitudes (they are amongst the highest vineyards in the world) and have  a lot of exposure to sun, which increases the amount of polyphenols (antioxidants) in the grapes. (The large amount of beneficial antioxidants is generally recognized in all Argentine wine.)

The typical grape of the Salta region is the sweet Riojan Torrontes, for which it is internationally recognized,  and other white grapes that also grow well such as Chardonnay and Chenin. There is also a large production of red grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Syrah and Tannat.

For a special sample of Argentine wines, accompanied by snacks from HG Restaurant, don’t miss our weekly tastings every Thursday starting at 7PM at Fierro Hotel.  Soler 5862, Palermo. 3220 6800. recepcion@fierrohotel.com.