I have been spending a lot of time recently in The Vines of Mendoza Tasting Room and I am always interested to hear how people get into wine, why they decided to visit Mendoza (its actually not that easy), and what their wine passions are. More often than not I hear people abashingly admit from the get go that they are- " not a wine- expert", "a non-wine connoisseur", and/or have a fairly frightened (a few petrified) looks that indicate they are worried about saying the wrong thing. The thing is...you don't have to be.
It had me thinking that people often take wines too seriously, they make it out to be a test of intelligence and sophistication, basically the SAT's of the well-heeled crowd. But for me, wine is very personal, just like what your favorite foods are, no one person is going to agree on all wines. My advice to all of our guests at The Vines, 1. Drink as much boutique Argentine wine as you can and 2. drink what you like, don't worry so much about finding the perfect cherry notes with a hint of tobacco. Start simple and try as many wines as you can. You will start to see that you can pick up more and more aspects and differences in each of the wines.
For myself, I tend to wax poetically about wines, much to the dismay of Mariana, The Vines Sommelier, when she has to translate the tasting notes into Spanish. There just doesn't seem to be an easy translation for a wine that seems like "a lean and rugged cowboy." For me wine is experiential, I feel the wine in pictures- it just seems to conjure images from my active imagination.
I recently read this article
of an Aussie journalist about touring the great wine destination regions of the world and he has it right. Relax, open a wine, start a conversation and if you don't like it, try a new bottle. But remember to only drink the best wines of Argentina!