The Vines of Mendoza

When a Winery is not a Winery


Tapaus is not an Argentine winery; it's an Argentine distillery. But, it gets a bit of a pass because all of their products are made from Malbec grapes and the structure itself is well worth a visit when you are in Mendoza. After having made my second visit in two weeks (ok, so I am a bit enamored with the place) I can give you the history back and forth. But you are going to have to make the visit yourself to get that angle.mandarina.jpg

Here is what I will tell you. Tapaus' unique approach to spirits and liquors is an interesting change of pace for anyone who wants to try something beyond wine. All of the products use grapes as their base, but once distilled the alcohol triplesec.jpgis mixed with a variety of flavors from grapefruit to honey (we spied about 10 jugs of raspberry liquor that is awaiting government approval). The resulting products are fantastic. My personal favorite is the Triple Sec while everyone else that I have taken has loved the Mandarina. The other big favorite is the Miel (honey) liquor that tastes like the honey my mother used to keep in the cupboard in a plastic bear.

If you are not interested in their products, the architecture is in and of itself enough to warrant a trip. Tapaus boasts a truly "green design and employs stones from the nearby Rio de Mendoza and recycled materials from old oil and gas operations in its design. Be sure to check out the hand made stills (they will remind you of re-runs of M*A*S*H) and the outdoor garden where water from the river is filtered for use in Tapaus' spirits. The folks are more than generous with their tastings (assuming you do the individual tour - you don't want do the bus tour at Tapaus).

And, remember at Tapaus you are tasting something much more potent than your average Argentine Malbec. You may want to have the folks at the Vines of Mendoza Information Center help you arrange a driver for this trip.
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