The Vines of Mendoza

True Origins | Wines with meaning | Tasting Notes

Check out these great gems. It's names come from Native American languages in South America, as Quechua and Mapudungu.

Mapuche Calendar

QUECHUA: The Quechuan languages are grouped in at least seven languages. Though it is traditionally referred to as a single language many (if not most) linguists treat it as a family of languages.

Some variety was already widely spoken across the Central Andes as a lingua franca among curacas long before the time of the Incas, who established it as the official language of administration for their Empire. Quechuan languages are still spoken today in various regional forms (the so-called ‘dialects’) by some 10 million people through much of South America, including most extensively and numerously in Peru, but also in south-western and central Bolivia, southern Colombia and Ecuador, north-western Argentina and northern Chile. It is the most widely spoken language of the indigenous peoples of the Americas.

MAPUDUNGU : From mapu 'earth, land' and dungun 'speak, speech' is a language isolate spoken in central Chile and west central Argentina by the Mapuche (from mapu and che 'people') people. It is also known as Mapudungu, Mapuche, and Araucanian (Araucano).

Source: Wikipedia


In the Quechua tongue, Qaramy means poetry and Pachahuasi (next wine)  means dwelling of time.  The vineyards are located at the foot of the Aconcagua, in Tunuyan, at 1150 metres above sea level.  8 hectares of the vines are selected to yield the grapes that will produce this wine.

REGION: Tupungato, Valle de Uco,Mendoza
VARIETAL COMPOSITION: 60% Malbec, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Syrah

WINEMAKING: The father-son duo behind this boutique label concentrates on the quality in their Valle de Uco vineyard to make this powerful wine. They pick and sort for optimal ripeness and ferment in small batches with select yeasts and controlled temperatures to ensure that the quality can be tasted in every bottle. Aged for 14 months in new French oak barrels, the intense oak tannins integrate smoothly with the rich fruit characteristics.

TASTING NOTES: Intoxicating and intense aromas hint at the heady mixture of flavors you will experience with this gorgeous dark ruby red wine. A perfume of fragrant summer night air mixes with bold flavors of red cherry, dusty rose, ripe strawberry and earth that linger in the mouth, coating and infusing it with beautiful floral characters, ripe fruit and lasting tannins. Smooth, yet textured, this enigmatic wine leaves you with all your senses sated.

FOOD PAIRING: Beef tenderloin steaks with gorgonzola
DRINKING GUIDE: We couldn't resist this wine and are sure you won't be able to either, so we have included two bottles. It is optimal to cellar this wine but, if you can't stand to wait, decant at least an hour prior to serving.



REGION: Tupungato, Valle de Uco, Mendoza
VARIETAL COMPOSITION: 61% Malbec, 23% Cabernet Sauvignon and 16% Syrah

WINEMAKING: Pachahuasi, meaning "temple of time" in the ancient Quechua language, is handpicked from a select 8 hectares in Qaramy's Uco Valley vineyard. The grapes are fermented in open-top concrete tanks followed by a natural malolactic fermentation. Aged for 9 months in new French oak barrels, this wine harmonizes the toasty tannins from the barrel with the ripe, high-altitude grapes.

TASTING NOTES: Inky jet black with dark garnet  hues and like a beautiful concierto, this concentrated wine exudes complexity, fortitude and passion. Complex boysenberry, coffee, blueberry and leather aromas integrate intimately with the smooth, lush plum, leather, red cranberry,  cinnamon and dulce de leche flavors. A lingering finish of vibrant tannins and brilliant spices complete this harmonious experience.

FOOD PAIRING: Braised short ribs
DRINKING GUIDE: Big and bold now, this wine will be delicious through 2011.

ANTUCURA  Blend 2003 |  CALVULCURA  Blend 2004

Antucurá means “Sun Stone” and Calvulcura means “Blue Stone” in old Mapudungun language. Mapudungun (mapu means 'earth' and dungun means 'to speak') was the language used by the Pehunenches, the first inhabitants of the area where the Antucurá winery stands today in the Uco Valley in Argentina.

REGION: Tupungato, Valle de Uco, Mendoza
VARIETAL COMPOSITION: 60% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon

WINEMAKING: The winery derives its name and insignia from the discovery of an etched stone. The stone, with its sun-like carving, was found on the land which would eventually nurture the vines of the winery. A double selection of clusters and grapes precedes a temperature-controlled fermentation in stainless steel tanks and an extended maceration for color and complexity. With perception and attention to detail, each vintage is then specially blended.

TASTING NOTES: Antucura, meaning "sun stone," is the embodiment of the connection between the vines and the earth. Elegant, with the spirit of a ballerina and a graceful burgundy color with sienna hues, it exudes refined aromas of red licorice, dark cherry, spice and jammy compote. Delicately powerful and shining with fruit, it ends vibrantly with distinct chocolate, earth and spice. It has an underlying backbone and finesse that accentuate its dynamic fruit characteristics.

FOOD PAIRING: Chicken and sausage jambalaya
DRINKING GUIDE: Now through 2010.



REGION: Vista Flores, Valle de Uco, Mendoza
VARIETAL COMPOSITION: 60% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon

WINEMAKING: Calvulcura means "blue stone" in the ancient language of the Pehuenches. The name signifies vines grown under the open blue sky in Vista Flores, amongst stones and rocks. This wine undergoes a selection of cluster and grapes, stainless steel fermentation and a natural malolactic fermentation in new French oak barrels.

TASTING NOTES: Layered and somewhat mysterious, this wine appeals to your inquisitive side with bright candy red and dark violet hues. Its distinctive aromas are bursting with caramel, toast, spice, raspberries and licorice.  Juicy and succulent, it is an explosion of dense fruit, chocolate, black plum and ripe fig, with velvety tannins and a super concentrated finish. Beguiling, it calls you back for more.

FOOD PAIRING: French lentil stew
DRINKING GUIDE: Powerful now and ageable for up to 5 years.



Amauta is a quechua word meaning a person of great wisdom. More of a philosopher than a doctor, yet more pragmatic than a fortune-teller. Amauta is professor or master in quechua.

REGION: Cafayate, Salta
VARIETAL COMPOSITION: 60% Malbec/ 30% Cabernet Sauvignon/ 10% Syrah

WINEMAKING: Bodega El Porvenir de los Andes was founded by Italian immigrants in 1890 and purchased in 1999 by the local family who is now producing some of Salta's best red wines. The grapes are grown one of 1750 Meters, and are aged only briefly in oak to round out the flavors.

TASTING NOTES: This blend from the highlands of Salta brings to mind Argentine leather and dark forest fruit. It shines an inky dark violet in the glass, and well structured tannins linger on the palate along with hints of cherry preserves.

FOOD PAIRING: Filet Mignon
DRINKING GUIDE: Drink through 2013
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