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So you’ve just got back from that great trip to Argentina or you’re hearing all the stories from your friends holiday in South America. Hopefully somewhere amongst those anecdotes will be the story of a wine tasting! If so, what made you enjoy it so much? If not, never fear as hosting your own wine tasting is much simpler than it may sound and can be great fun!

 

Step 1 – Chose the wines!

For your home wine tasting you don’t want to select too many wines. This may result in confusion of flavours and tastes. Between four and six wines should be more than enough to get a wide range.

With so much choice, ask if you can try before you buy. Many places offer this and is a great option.

Then determine which kind of wines you want to offer. Everyone will have their preferences, but get hold of a good sparkling or white wine and you may have your red wine lover converting! Then head down to a good supplier or check on the internet for some trustworthy suppliers than can get that great quality wine to you!

 

I would recommend offering a line-up of wines, each one to go with a course of your dinner. A great choice could be a Chardonnay or Torrontes with a starter, a Bonarda or Pinot Noir if you are offering cheese, meants and breads for an apetizer.

 

If yummy meats are not your thing, try a ceviche or a maybe a vegetarian option with nuts and pulses.

Then work to a second and third course, adding in a Cabernet Sauvignon or Malbec depending on the heaviness of the food.Finally with chocolate you can pair a red wine, or a dessert wine with a lighter course.

Dark chocolates go great with many red wines.

2, Pair the wine with the dinner food and make notes

This part is more up to your preferences,  your friends preferences and the wine you have chosen. Chose what will constitute each course and write up a small sheet of notes for each wine.

 

OR

 

You could keep it a blind test! This is a really fun option. Be aware though that this may only work to expectations if your friends are concentrating on each wine. Here you could serve each wine, talk about them. Then at the end, serve one again (with the bottle covered or hidden) and ask them to guess which wine they are drinking.

 

 

So you’ve just got back from that great trip to Argentina, or you’re hearing all the stories from your friends holiday in South America. Hopefully somewhere amongst those anecdotes will be the story of a wine tasting! If so, what made you enjoy it so much? If not, never fear as hosting your own wine tasting is much simpler than it may sound and can be great fun!

 

Step 1 – Chose the wines!

For your home wine tasting you don’t want to select too many wines. This may result in confusion of flavours and tastes. Between four and six wines should be more than enough to get a wide range.

With so much choice, ask if you can try before you buy. Many places offer this and is a great option.

Then determine which kind of wines you want to offer. Everyone will have their preferences, but get hold of a good sparkling or white wine and you may have your red wine lover converting! Then head down to a good supplier or check on the internet for some trustworthy suppliers than can get that great quality wine to you!

 

I would recommend offering a line-up of wines, each one to go with a course of your dinner.

 

A great choice could be a Chardonnay or Torrontes with a starter, a Bonarda or Pinot Noir if you are offering cheese, meats and breads for an apetizer.

If yummy meats are not your thing, try a ceviche or a maybe a vegetarian option with nuts and pulses.

Then work to a second and third course, adding in a Cabernet Sauvignon or Malbec depending on the heaviness of the food.

 

Finally with chocolate you can pair a red wine, or a dessert wine with a lighter course.

Dark chocolates go great with many red wines.

2, Pair the wine with the dinner food and make notes

This part is more up to your preferences,  your friends preferences and the wine you have chosen. Chose what will constitute each course and write up a small sheet of notes for each wine.

 

OR

 

You could keep it a blind test! This is a really fun option. Be aware though that this may only work to expectations if your friends are concentrating on each wine. Here you could serve each wine, talk about them. Then at the end, serve one again (with the bottle covered or hidden) and ask them to guess which wine they are drinking.

Of course, if you’re not feeling up to cooking take away the food pairing and offer a post-dinner wine tasting!

3. Make your guest list!

This, unfortunately, I am unable to help you with. Invite your favorite group of friends, family (or maybe neighbors you were looking to get to know) .

 

4. Have a great time

Enjoy your wines and have a laugh! Don’t worry if at first you don’t smell the oak or understand the tannins. Keep trying different wines and reading up on blogs and articles and in time you’ll know your Gewurztraminer from your Gruner Veltliner!

 

And remember – you can make your wine tasting so it’s not snobby at all! Tasting wine is about appreciating the smells  and tastes and sharing your personal preferences, whether they agree with others or not. Check out wine tastings being offered in other regions such as france, Italy, Chile,  Mendoza, Salta and Buenos Aires.

 

, take away the food pairings and just hold an all wine tasting!

3. Make your guest list!

This, unfortunately, I am unable to help you with. Invite your favorite group of friends, family (or maybe neighbours you were looking to get to know) .

4. Have a great time

Enjoy your wines and have a laugh! Don’t worry if at first you don’t smell the oak or understand the tannins. Keep trying different wines and reading up on blogs and articles and in time you’ll know your Gewurztraminer from your Gruner Veltliner!

 

And remember – you can make your wine tasting so it’s not snobby at all! Tasting wine is about appreciating the smells  and tastes and sharing your personal preferences, whether they agree with others or not. Check out wine tastings being offered in other regions such as France, Italy, Chile,  Mendoza, Salta and Buenos Aires.

 

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Buenos Aires nightlife has a worldwide fame, from bars of many different kinds to partying up until 8am, it seems like options never run out in BA.

So for all the party lovers here is a list of the top 10 bars to get a fancy cocktail regardless the time!

 

For a long night… Mundo Bizarro

 

Mundo Bizarro is also very well know for our unique ambience, music selection and visuals. MB is the home of Kustom Kulture and the Bizarre. If you dig the spirit of American Cocktail Lounges of the 40’s and 50’s, you found the place to get your “drink on” in Palermo viejo. This bar has been around since 1997, they have a wide menu with all classics and “custom creation”

cocktails by bartender extraordinaire Pablo Pignatta!



To enjoy the evening… Million

 

This beautiful bar is located in the heart of Recoleta, and it is a stunning Resto bar, with a little of a 20’s vibe. Opened in 1999 and the bar, built over 120 years ago, has an exquisite menu and all classics when it comes to cocketelerie, the house itself will take you all the way back to the past and you can enjoy every part of it, from some drinks at the garden, to a delightful brunch at the living room, perfect for a calm elegant evening!

http://landingpadba.com/what-to-do-in-buenos-aires-dec-6-12/

Hurray for Landing Pad BA!

Of all alcoholic drinks in the world, wine is by far the oldest. The history of wine dates all the way back to between 8000 and 6000BC!  Anything that old has surely gone through various changes and stages of evolution. There is no doubt, therefore, that wine has come a long, long way with the evolution of man, culture, agriculture, industry, and technology. In terms of location, cultural and archaeological evidence points wine’s origins to the middle east and Europe, most specifically Iran, Armenia, Georgia, Greece, and Egypt. Wine in this era became traditional and ceremonial, used in both serious and celebratory settings where people gathered on a regular basis.

Major marked evolution and progress in wine and winemaking occurred throughout the Roman Empire. New winemaking technologies came forth such as the wine press, and new cultivation, storage, and transportation techniques were introduced with new grape varieties and barrels. Up until this time the fundamental process of fermentation, which allows wine to exist had become considered sacred, holy, even spiritual. Legend has it that the alcohol created by yeast in the breaking down of grapes was originally considered a poison. Upon realizing its powerful effects on mind and psyche, kings widened its production base and availability in society, declaring it a staple drink for important events and ceremonies.

Following its expansion throughout Europe, wine in the last few centuries was more common in society throughout the South where grapes were actually grown. Northern regions tended to drink more beers and ales, although wine was imported at a hefty price. The famous phylloxera epidemic which destroyed vineyards across Europe provided a fundamental push into the Americas for the wine industry. Today’s global and technological world has wine culture and awareness more extensive and homogenized than ever. Argentina has become one of the key wine producing regions in the world located in the Americas. A wine tasting in Buenos Aires can yield some of the highest quality wines throughout the region and even across the world.

(Guest blog by Ashley)

There are several sites on the internet listing “things you must do while in Buenos Aires”. After 9 months here I have accomplished several including; 28. Sprinting across Av. 9 de Julio in one bolt, http://argentinastravel.com/549/9-de-julio-is-it-the-widest-street-in-the-world/

29.Spending an afternoon reading in Ateneo’s book store, http://www.flickr.com/photos/proserpina_/101350718/

30. Eating pizza from Guerrin on Av. Corrients etc http://www.pizzeria-guerrin.com.ar/

But even with all my time in Buenos Aires there were a few I had missed. It wasn’t until my boyfriend’s dad came to visit that was motivated to get out and cross of the last few experiences off my list. Thursday morning when Chip arrived, we walked around to 1.Plaza de Mayo http://www.flickr.com/photos/faw/38877372/ and up Av. de Mayo to Café Tortoni.

2.Café Tortoni http://www.cafetortoni.com.ar makes everyone’s list. I’d passed it with long lines of tourists waiting to get in. The interior of the space remained a mystery however, as all the windows are closed with heavy curtains.  We walked in and my jaw dropped, marble, wood, stained glass and waiters in tuxedos. We took a seat and ordered a3.traditional Argentine breakfast; 3 media lunas and café con leche. . http://www.akworld.net/webblog/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/cafe_con_leche.jpg

Afterwards we walked through our neighborhood of San Telmo and showed Chip a few of our favorite spots like 4. Plaza Dorrego http://akworld.net/BAweekly/?p=296 , and 5. Defensa Street  http://z.about.com/d/gaytravel/1/0/E/G/-/-/Defensa_Street_1.jpg before stopping in at his hotel. Later that afternoon the two headed for 6.Recoleta Cemeteryhttp://www.recoletacemetery.com/ another staple on the list. I stayed in to work, something that you should avoid at all costs if visiting BA.

7. La Cabrerra, BA’s most famous steak house. http://travel.nytimes.com/travel/guides/central-and-south-america/argentina/buenos-aires/60725/la-cabrera/restaurant-detail.html , We heard the rumors. We read the reviews online. But nothing could prepare us for the monster cut of steak and smorgasbord of sides they put before us. We walked out with half a cow in a doggie bag. I recently read recently that Argentina has a per capita consumption of beef per year of 143 lbs. I am convinced La Cabrera has something to do with this. http://worldfocus.org/blog/2009/07/20/meat-lovers-mourn-argentinas-disappearing-beef/6393/

But no matter how much steak you eat there is always room for 8. Gelatto http://www.freddo.com.ar/ We tried to walk a bit of it off by passing 9.BA‘s narrowest house in San Telmohttp://image12.webshots.com/13/1/21/41/139512141XJERTP_fs.jpg

The next morning we woke early. I made crepes, delicious and not on the list but the 10. Dulce de Leche I filled them with is. We boarded the bus and headed for 11. The Mataderos street fair. http://www.gotraveltoargentina.com/argentina_flea_market.html Sadly death took on a new meaning in Mataderos as we took the 45 minute bus ride out to discover there was in fact no fair that day. We wandered a few blocks noting the roughness of the barrio; stray dogs, broken glass, cracked pavement and headed for the nearby safety of 12. a Hole in the wall parilla,http://www.akworld.net/webblog/wp-content/uploads/2006/10/parilla.jpg where we 13. ate asado and 14. drank Quilmes.  http://www.quilmes.com.ar/
On the way home Stu and his dad repeated # 8.

15. We napped. Naps are universal for all travel lists.
Around 6 we  went to 16. The MALBA
http://www.malba.org.ar/web/home.php for some modern art. On top of the permanent greats like Frida Kahlo Diego Rivera we swung to the top floor for a peculiar temporary exhibit.  We walked out scratching our heads as one should when leaving a modern art museum.

We walked around a bit before heading back to our place. We made the night extra special by opening Stu’s 17. Good bottle of wine, http://www.anuvawines.com/ the Las Perdices Don Juan. https://www.anuvawines.com/wine/blend/don-juan-reserve-blend-2006/ The boys taunted our kitten with  small scraps of cow from the night before.

For Chips last day in town we walked around 18. La Boca http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/South_America/Argentina/Distrito_Federal/Buenos_Aires-1541981/General_Tips-Buenos_Aires-La_Boca-BR-1.html , probably my least favorite on the list aside from 19. Dog poop. It continues to amaze me how exhausting two blocks can feel when you are harassed by people trying to sell you something. “No I don’t want to buy a pair of jeans for my dog. And no I would not like to “prove” a cup of coffee”.

From there we took a taxi for # 20Conversation in broken Spanish with a Porteno cabi- This one includes several parts or cannot be considered complete. You must talk about a) Politics, both Bush and Obama. b) asado and meat. c) Soccer and currently d) Michael Jackson. http://www.citytax.com.ar/flota-radiotaxi/laflota-radiotaxi8.jpg

We exited at 21. Plaza Serrano in Palermo. http://argentinastravel.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/plaza-serrano-feria.jpg The afternoon was spent walking around the neighborhood with a stop for lunch in one of the city’s top rated restaurants; Sarki’s. http://www.guiaoleo.com.ar/detail.php?ID=48 We enjoyed some wine and excellent food. This place makes my list at # 22.

We continued walking and made our way through Alto Palermo and past the 23. The Pollo Fields.http://www.tomhopkinsstudio.com/index.php#mi=2&pt=1&pi=10000&s=4&p=0&a=0&at=0 We showed Chip the Anuva Head Quarters and experienced a rare phenomenon in this city, rain, not on the list.

Walking some more we all felt the need for a little caffeine. Stuart indirectly repeated #8 again with a coffee milk shake. We warmed our bones and relaxed a bit before splashing through the streets to La Cava Jufre.

We made reservations for a jazz concert and arrived early to snag the giant velvet couch. We ordered a terrific bottle of wine and waited for the show to start. We could not have asked for a better night. We enjoyed a Jazz quartet’s long set with the best seat in the house.

By 2 am we made it back to our apt. The 4 days flew by so quickly it felt weird to say good bye. But we felt proud for accomplishing so much. Next time we will have a few more things to cross off; including 24. Peruvian Chicken in Abasto, http://www.guiaoleo.com.ar/detail.php?ID=2543 24. Wine Tasting https://www.anuvawines.com/wine-tasting/ and oh yeah maybe 25. Tango, http://minuet.dance.ohio-state.edu/~nicholas53/Images/Words/Passionate/tango2.jpg 26. Leather, and some http://animalsneedkisses.files.wordpress.com/2009/02/cow.jpg 27. Mate. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/55/Mate_calabaza_fondo_blanco.jpg

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